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P0PULARMECHAN1CS.COM 



JUNE 2011 






B UILD A 
GO-KART 

I'M TEST: 

FINISH 
NAILERS 





FIRST DRIVE 

FULLY 

ELECTRIC 
IS SAN LEAF 

CLEANER 

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NUCLEAR 

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WorldMags 




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P0PULARMECHANICS.COM 



JUNE 2011 1 



PM FEATURES VOLUME 188 NO. 6 




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62 Is Fusion Finally for Real? After tantalizing — and frustrating — scientists for decades, fusion is emerging 
as a potentially game-changing energy. But is "limitless" power attainable? by Elizabeth svoboda 
70 The New Energy Crisis: 10 Fixes Unrest in the Middle East, Japan's nuclear disaster, superhigh gas 
prices: PM proposes real-world solutions to our power problems, by alex Hutchinson 

74 High-Mileage Test Forget yesteryear's cramped econoboxes — today's high-mpg gasoline-powered cars 
have legroom (and speed) to spare. We test the best new little rides on the road, by john pearley Huffman 
78 The Great Outdoors The way we see it, you cruise, you lose. So stop the adventure goose chase and check 
out a multisport base camp. PM heads to the Georgia coast for a shooting, boating and fishing excursion, 
and highlights three other destinations where one activity is never enough, by matt hendrickson 
£ When the First Responder Is You After you dial 91 1, what next? In the critical minutes before profes- 
sional help arrives, you could save lives. Our experts tell you how to administer CPR, rescue a drowning 
victim, save someone from a burning car — and go from bystander to hero, by kalee Thompson 



cover 



The new energy crisis is deeper and more complex than any we've experienced in the past. But there are also more solutions at 
hand than ever before. Don't get mad, get informed— and take charge. Illustration by Dogo. 



< 

a: 



PHOTOGRAPH BY SARAH SHATZ 



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2 JUNE 2011 



POPULARMECHANICS.COM 



DEPARTMENTS 



In Every Issue 6 How to Reach Us 8 Letters 160 This Is My Job 



m^ 




11 Decimal Point Break Using science to 
build a better surfboard. Plus: A humanoid 

robot that walks just like, well, a human; 
how Japan's earthquake changed the 
planet; harnessing energy from sunlight, 
ocean waves and molten rock. 



Upgrade 



21 Blades of Glory The Ridgid TwinBlade 
Saw uses two counter-spinning blades for 
added stability and control, cutting wood, 
pipe, sheet metal and more. Plus: Are 
pricey 3D glasses worth it? We put them to 
the test. Also, best gifts for a dad or a grad. 



New Cars 



33 GTI Squared VW's speedy GTI gets even speedier with the R version's debut. Plus: Ford's 
Raptor makes itself more useful; a 691-hp Lambo, the nimble Mazda5 minivan and more. 



48 Long-Term Test Cars The Jeep Grand Cherokee Overland joins our fleet— and battles 
a Midwestern blizzard. Plus: We get a charge out of driving the all-electric Nissan Leaf. 



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The Nissan Leaf is right at home in an 

urban environment. 






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The line between our cars and gadgets is collapsing fast. 
After three weeks with the Nissan Leaf, we're getting 
used to plugging in our vehicle just like our cellphones 
and iPads. — Long-Term Test Cars, page 55 



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56 Was the Shuttle Worth It? As NASA retires the shuttle after years of triumphs and 
tragedies, PM editor-in-chief Jim Meigs calls for a new approach to space exploration. 



cover 



86 First-Responder Skills 78 The Great Outdoors 70 Fixing the New 
Energy Crisis 74 Get 40 MPG at the Pump 62 Cleaner, Safer Nuclear Power 





Home 

123 Drivers Ed Here's a tip 
for putting a project into warp 
speed: Use a finish nailer. We 
test 10 to find the best. 
126 Homeowners Clinic 

Ready, aim, fire! Get the most 
out of your pressure washer. 
Plus: Making your home bug- 
free; how to battle dishwasher- 
clogging hard water. 
132 PM Saturday Ever want 

to build a go-kart? Stop 
dreaming and do it with our 
step-by-step plans. 

Auto 

135 Saturday Mechanic From 
efficiency and safety to fit and 
finish, 23 ways your car is 
better than your dad's. 
142 Car Clinic How to loosen 
rear brake discs from their 
hubs. Plus: The cause of a bub- 
bling noise from under the dash 
of a 1999 Chevy S-10; prop- 
erly checking fuel economy. 

Tech 

149 Extending Your HDMI 
Cables How to get the most 
out of your all-in-one TV- 
connection device. 
152 Digital Clinic Tracking 
down your lost phone. 
Plus: Configure your iPad to 
watch Flash videos; find the 
sweet spot on the Nintendo 
3DS's glasses-free display. 



The PopMech App 

Check out our latest 
iPad edition. Just 
open iTunes, go 
to the store 
and search for 
"Popular Mechanics 
Magazine." 



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PHOTOGRAPH BY THOMAS PRIOR 



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© 2011 Gold Eagle Co. , 4400 S. Kildare, Chicago, IL 60632 www.startyourenginesus.com 800-367-3245 




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JUNE 



PM'S FIRST-EVER HOME SAFETY WORKSHOP 

Meet the experts and disaster pros at Houston's 
Reliant Center June 4 for a workshop on protect- 
ing your home and family during house fires, 

floods and other disasters. Special guests include 
PM editors and Cody Lundin, star of the Discovery 

Channel's Dual Survival. To sign up, go to 
popularmechanics.com/homesafetyshow 




tech VS SHARKS Learn about man's best tools 
for thwarting the ocean's perfect killing machine, 
including steel-mesh shark suits that reduce 
injury if a fishy predator catches you in its jaws. 
popularmechanics. com/sharkattack 

lifesaver OR liability? A personal locator bea- 
con might be an outdoorsman's most important 
piece of equipment. But are people using them 
frivolously, putting lives at risk by summoning 
search-and-rescue teams to nonemergencies? 
popularmechanics. com/beacon 

For extra photos and video from our editors, 
follow Popular Mechanics on Twitter at 
(SfPopMech and on Facebook at facebook 
. com/popularmechanics. 





MISSING A COMPONENT 

FOR YOUR LATEST PROJECT? 

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as tender as any around and comes ready to grill at a moment's notice 

Learn to love all 29 tantalizing cuts of lean beef at BeefltsWhatsForDinner.com. 

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WorldMags 



6 JUNE 2011 



POPULARMECHANICS.COM 




Popular Mechanics 







PM 

Breakthrough 
Awards 
Update 



CATCHING UP WITH 

Dr. Anthony Atala 

WAKE FOREST INSTITUTE FOR 
REGENERATIVE MEDICINE 

In 2006, Popular Mechanics presented 
Dr. Anthony Atala and a colleague with 
a Breakthrough Award for their 
lifesaving work growing human 
bladders in the lab and implanting them 
in patients. The surgeon made history 
again last year by engineering miniature 
livers from human cells. Then, in March, 
the team announced that patients who 
had received lab-engineered urethras 
had completed a successful six-year 
followup period. We talked to Atala 
about what his recent work means for 
patients and the future of organ 
replacement. — ALLIE HAAKE 

PM: Transplants have become familiar, 
and devices such as pacemakers help 
damaged organs function better. How 
does the ability to grow organs and tissue 
change what's possible in medicine? 

AA: More than 110,000 people are 
currently on U.S. transplant waiting lists, 
and even when a patient gets a donor 
organ, the body's natural response is 
rejection. Our process allows us to use the 
patient's own cells. We're very happy with 
the advances we've made. It's much 
harder to build a liver than a bladder, 
because the liver is a solid organ. We 
actually have to preserve the blood vessel 
tree and perfuse it with cells. We still have 
a lot of work ahead of us, but in the future, 
I think we'll be able to build most 
solid-organ systems— even the brain. 

For more, visit popularmechonics. com/ 
atalainterview. 




James B.Meigs 

Editor-in-Chief 



Executive Editor David Dunbar 
Design Director Michael Lawton 

EDITORIAL 

Editor, Automotive Larry Webster 

Senior Editor, Automotive Mike Allen 

Senior Editor, Home Roy Berendsohn 

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Associate Editors Erin McCarthy, 

Seth Porges, Harry Sawyers 

Research Director David Cohen 

Assistant to the Editor-in-chief Allie Haake 

West Coast Editor Ben Stewart 
Special Projects Editor Joe Bargmann 

Contributing Editors: 

Davin Coburn, Andrew English, John Galvin, 

Jim Gorman, Chris Grundy, William Gurstelle, 

Carl Hoffman, John Pearley Huff man, Alex Hutchinson, 

Joel Johnson, Thomas D. Jones, Dan Koeppel, 

Jay Leno, Fred Mackerodt, The MythBusters 

(Jamie Hyneman, Adam Savage), Joe Oldham, 

Glenn Harlan Reynolds, Rex Roy, Noah Shachtman, 

Erik Sofge, Kalee Thompson, Joseph Truini, 

James Vlahos, Logan Ward, Basem Wasef, 

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Contributing Photographers & Illustrators: 

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SURGEON GENERAL WARNING 

Cigar Smoking Can Cause Lung 
Cancer And Heart Disease. 









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8 JUNE 2011 



POPULARMECHANICS.COM 




PM 



LETTERS 



&l 



m m 



Get your 
photo in 

PopMech 

Want to appear 

in PM? To be 

considered, 

send us a 

photo of 

yourself with 

the latest issue 

(plus your 

name, city 

and state, and 

a short note 

about why you 

love PM] to 

popular 

mechanics 

@hearstxom. 

See some of 

our favorites at 

popular 

mechanics.com/ 

readerphotos. 



If she weren't selling some of the most exquisite jewelry in the world, PM reader Laura Curtis of 
New York City says she'd probably be a helicopter pilot or mechanic. "Fashion mags? No, thanks, 
PM is the only magazine I subscribe to. I love learning how things work/ 7 



knowledge of my own. While I don't 
think I have the gall to try all the tasks in 
your article, it's still nice to know how to 
stunt-jump a car and use an underwater 
chain saw. The next time I meet some- 
one at a social event, I'll ask him if he 
knows how to roll a stunt plane. Imagine 
his surprise when I tell him how! 

CLAIR LISTON GROSSE POtNTE, Ml 

Logging Criminal Activity 

I liked your April column "The Antisocial 
Network," which describes how police 
officers track criminal activity on sites 
such as Facebook and Twitter. I'm 
shocked at how foolish people can be. For 
instance, posting videos of themselves 
holding illegal weapons on YouTube to 
intimidate their enemies? I almost can't 
believe it! But it is nice to know that as 
social networking becomes more preva- 
lent, police forces are adjusting their 
criminal-investigation strategies. 

JACOB WYNER WOODBRIDGE, CT 



Hey, Now That's Extreme! 

Your April article "Extreme How-To" 
about performing daring and difficult 
tasks was fun to read all the way through, 
but one item in particular — How to 
Lasso a Bull — took me back. When I was 
a young man, I worked in a small zoo in 
Greenville, S.C. One day, the lion 
escaped, and I just happened to be the 
fastest runner on the scene. I was able to 
catch up to him — but only after he had 
tangled himself up in some vines. I took 
off my belt, carefully looped it around 
his mouth and tightened it into a make- 
shift muzzle. Now what? Fortunately, 
there were others behind me who helped 
net the lion and take him back to the 
zoo. Still, it was an extreme situation, for 
sure. Thanks for a great article. 

WILLIAM PATTERSON SILER CITY, NC 



My husband is a mechanical engineer — 
and something of a know-it-all — so I 
enjoy stumping him with unexpected 



Did You Hear the One About the Really Fast Car With No Pistons? 

I loved Jay Leno's column "Almost the Future," about the 1963 Chrysler Turbine. 
I've been fascinated with the car ever since it appeared at the 1964 New York 
World's Fair. Did you know that if not for a failed transmission, it could have won 
the Indy 500 in 1967? 

JEFFREY C0PPAGE FARMINGTON, CT 



^r\ 



Hello, PM readers who use 
Facebook and Twitter— and 
thank you for commenting on 

our stories. Here are a few 
recent tweets and posts: 

I love the newest edition of PM ! 
Especially the piece on how to 
build an impromptu bomb 
shelter, and the Tetris studies. 

JESSICA ALEKSAIMDROWICZ, 
VIA FACEBOOK 

(Tech Watch, April '11) 

I wouldn't mind building a jet, 
but my garage is too small : ) 

J0HAN BRAND, VIA FACEBOOK 



('How to Restore a Harrier 
Jump Jet" popularmechanics 
.com) 

Good read in ©PopMech on 
the ©Fiat 500. 

@ARASHSHIRAZI, VIA TWITTER 

C201 1 Hat 500 Test Drive, " 
pop ularmechanics. com) 

Thanks to ©PopMech for being 
a sponsor of the 2012 
©USAScienceFest. 

©USASCIENCEFEST, VIA TWITTER 

Follow us: 

©PopMech 



Exciting news! Popular Mechanics was nominated in April for a National Magazine Award (NMA), also known as an Ellie, for General 
Excellence. We're very proud to be recognized, since the annual awards are like the Oscars of the magazine industry. In March, our 
iPad app received a Mobile Edition nod, so we're on a roll! The Ellies (see statuette, right) will be handed out in May. 



What 

do you 
think? 



WRITE TO US Include your full name, address and phone number, even if you correspond by email (so we can verify your identity, 
double-check the spelling of your name— you know, that sort of thing). Send email to popularmechanics@hearst.com. All letters are 
subject to editing for length, style and format. SUBSCRIBE Go to subscribe.popularmechanics.com. 



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MODERN MEDICINE 






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Cancer 
Velcro 




Cancer often spreads 
through elusive circulat- 
ing tumor cells (CTCs) that 
travel in the blood. Medical 
researchers at UCLA have 
developed a layer of tiny silicon 
pillars coated in antibodies that 
can extract CTCs from blood for 
identification— what the investi- 
gators call a liquid biopsy. 
Initial tests with prostate cancer 
patients show that the tech- 
nique is faster and more 
sensitive than other methods, 
making it ideal for early detec- 
tion of metastasizing cancers. 



QUICK HITS 





CARS WITH AN 
ELECTRIC GLIDE 

Piezoelectric- 



energy-scavenging 
devices, which turn 
vibrations into 
electricity, are a 
popular area of 
energy research. 
But most people 
don't think to use 
them the other way 
around— applying 
electricity to create 
vibrations. Staff at 

Germany's 
Fraunhofer 
Institutes have 
replaced rubber 
parts that connect 
the metal frame of 
a car and its 
chassis with 
piezoceramic ones 
that generate real- 
time vibrations, 
counteracting the 
vibrations coming 
from the engine 
and the road to 
produce a quieter 
ride. The oscillation- 
damping bearings 
are being tested 

on a VW Passat 
this year. 



PERFECTLY 
ORGANIC LIGHTS 

^ Today's organic 
light-emitting 
diodes (LEDs), 
made from mostly 
carbon-containing 
molecules, still 
require expensive 
precious metals to 
generate light. New 
crystals, designed 
by University of 
Michigan research- 
ers, use inexpensive 
carbon, oxygen, 
chlorine and 
bromine, making 
them the first LEDs 
made from purely 
organic compounds. 
They also have no 
trouble generating 
the color blue, a 
notorious weakness 
of current organic 
LEDs. 



WS + TRENDS + BREAKTHROUGHS 












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SCIENCE AT PLAY 



Decimal 

Point 

Break 

Researchers in Spain have loaded a 
high-tech surfboard with sensors that 
they hope will "turn feelings into facts 

and figures." A slew of instruments— 
which together weigh less than 2 

pounds— transmit data wirelessly from 
the board to an onshore computer 
for real-time monitoring. Tecnalia 
Research & Innovation and surfboard 
manufacturer Pukas hope to use data 
collected from professional surfers to 
make stronger, more responsive 
surfboards. — alex hutch in son 




Acceferometer 

-> Relays the 
gravitational forces 
imposed on the 
board; a tight turn 
can generate 5 g's. 



Gyroscope 

-> Determines 
orientation, including 
the angle of the 
board as it carves 
through water. 



-> Uses satellites to 
pinpoint the board's 
location and track 
its speed. 
Strain Gauges 
-> Measure the flex 
of the board during 
maneuvers. 



safety More Driving, Less Danger 



a i 

Driving fatalities dropped 25 percent over the past 
five years, and last years statistic is projected to be the 
lowest since 1949. The fatality rate is falling despite an 
increase in driving of more than 20 billion vehicle miles 
between 2009 and 2010. The American Highway Users 
Alliance notes that many safety features voluntarily 
introduced in the last two decades, such as electronic 
stability control, are now ubiquitous. 

Source: U.S. Department of Transportation. * DOT projection based on raw data from several sou 



■ 

- 
- 






roes. 



POPULARMECHANICS.COM 



JUNE 2011 11 



WorldMags 




■ 



ALTERNATIVE ENERGY 





\ 



FULVALENE_ 
DIRUTHENIUM 

SOLAR ARRAYS 




Elemental Power 

RESEARCHERS MAKE IMPORTANT BREAKTHROUGHS 

IN SYSTEMS TO CONVERT SUNLIGHT, MOLTEN ROCK AND 

OCEAN WAVES TO ENERGY. 



V'EiV P ■ 



nam** *l2?*?2 



GEOTHERMAL 
POWER PLANT 









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INJECTION 
WELL 



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WARNING 
BUOY 



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GENERATOR 









FIRE DOWN BELOW — 



-> A joint U.S.-lcelandic 
drilling team went looking 
for high-temperature 
water near an Icelandic 
volcano in 2009, hoping to 
tap the ground for a 
geothermal well capable of 
generating 8 megawatts 
of power from 570 F 
steam. But less than 
halfway to their projected 
15,000-foot depth, red-hot 
magma entered the well, 
forcing the team to stop 
drilling. It turned out to be 
a lucky break: The magma 
produced a flow of 750 F 
dry steam, which, applied 
to a turbine, could 
generate 25 Mw of 
electricity— enough to 

power 30,000 homes. The 
researchers are now 
seeking other shallow 
sources of magma as 
potential energy. 

— ALEX HUTCHINSON 



BOTTLED 
SUNLIGHT 




convert sunlight into 
electricity, while 
solar-thermal systems 
harness the sun's heat. 
University of California, 
Berkeley, chemist Peter 
Vollhardt has designed a 
material that combines 
the two approaches, 
trapping light energy and 
storing it until it is 
released on demand as 
heat. The material, 
fulvalene di ruthenium, 
has an atomic structure 
that changes shape when 
exposed to light, a 
reaction Vollhardt 
compares to loading a 
spring. A small amount of 
heat or a chemical 
catalyst prompts the 
molecules to snap back to 
their original state, 
emitting energy. 
Vollhardt's team is now 
developing a rechargeable 
heat battery. "My dream 
is to heat a cup of 
espresso with California 
sunlight," he says. 

— LOGAN WARD 



OCEAN-POWER BOOST 



■> By designing turbine blades to imitate the wings of airplanes, U.S. Air Force 
Academy engineer Stefan Siegel has created an ultraefficient water turbine capable of 
converting 80 percent of a wave's energy to usable power. Typical water turbines rely 
on the direct push of the water, or drag, but that method can waste half the potential 
energy of the wave's motion. The Cycloidal Wave Energy Converter has two hydrofoil 
blades that leverage Bernoulli's principle: They force water to flow faster over one side 
than the other, creating lift on the low-pressure side. "As they rotate, they absorb 
energy and create torque at the shaft," Siegel says. "We can hook up a generator 
directly to our main shaft, without a complicated p owe r-takeoff system. That increases 
efficiency." Siegel estimates that a future ocean system could power 4500 homes. 
Department of Energy- funded testing begins in August. — SARAH FECHT 



I 










12 JUNE 2011 | POPULARMECHANICS.COM 

.net 



LLUSTRATION BY RUI RICARDO 



> WorldMags 



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Grocery Delivery. 

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MACHINES ON THE MOVE 



Balancing 

Act 




he biggest challenge for walking robots used to 

be staying upright. Now, Boston Dynamics has two 
four-year DARPA contracts to make its Petman 
android prototype as agile as its human creators. 
Most robots utilize static stability, always keeping 
their center of mass directly over the support provided 
by their legs. But to move quickly, the new robot, called Atlas, will 
practice dynamic stability— instead of reacting to motion, the robot 
will anticipate how the step changes its balance and compensate 
by swinging its arms or adjusting its feet. Boston Dynamics will use 
Atlas and four-legged robots, such as BigDog (a 2006 PM 
Breakthrough Award winner) and Cheetah (built to run at least 30 
mph), to study robot mobility. Future dynamically stable rescue 
robots could climb through rubble or crawl into tight spaces to 
assess building damage or search for survivors. — david hambling 




Off to the 
Robot Races 

-► After 54 hours of 

competition, 
Robovie-PC prevailed 
by the slimmest of 
margins— just 1.7 
seconds— in the 



first-ever robot 
marathon, held in 
Osaka, Japan. Five 
bipedal robots started 
the 26.2-mile race, but 
just two finished all 
423 laps. It was a 
contest of endurance 



over speed: Support 
crews changed 
batteries and cooled 
motors with com- 
pressed air, but the 
robots had to pick 
themselves up when 
they fell. — AH. 



LABORATORY 
ADVANCES 



During 
Surgery, 
the Beat 
Goes On 



One of the 
riskiest parts of 
open-heart 
surgery is that 

doctors have to 
stop the organ 
and send the 

patient's blood 
through a 

bypass machine, 
potentially 
causing heart 
and brain 
damage. 
Researchers at 
the German 
Aerospace 
Center have 
added motion 
compensation to 
a three-armed 
surgical robot, 
which may allow 
surgeons to 
operate directly 
on a beating 
heart. A stereo 
camera on one of 
the remote- 
controlled arms 
monitors the 
heart's move- 
ment; that data 
is processed and 
displayed to the 
doctor as a 

motionless 
image, allowing 
him or her to 
precisely guide 
surgical tools. 
The technology 
remains at least 
several years 
from appearing 
in hospitals. -ah. 



I n 



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■ 







14 JUNE 2011 | POPULARMECHANICS.COM 

.net 



> WorldMags 






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WorldMags 




TECH WATCH 




The colossal 9.0 earthquake in Japan shifted enough mass to 
make Earth rotate faster. Richard Gross, a geodynamics scientist at 
NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory, compares the phenomenon to a spinning 
ice skater. "She moves her arms closer to her body, moving her mass closer 
to the axis about which she's rotating," he says. "Earthquakes do the same 
thing." The stronger the quake, the greater the Earth's deformation and its 
effect on rotation. Gross calculated a 6.7-inch shift in the axis around which 
Earth's mass is balanced— twice that caused by the quakes under the Indian 
Ocean in 2004 and in Chile in 2010. Though the consequences of such a shift 
are mostly negligible, it can affect spacecraft navigation. Even a tiny change in 
the angle at which a spacecraft leaves Earth could mean a large guidance 
problem across tens of millions of miles. - andrew moseman 




HOW EARTHQUAKES 
AFFECT TIME 



The north-south axis 
runs through the poles. 

The Earth's mass 
balances around its figure 



axis, which is about 33 
feet off of the north- 
south axis. 

The March 2011 
Japanese quake shifted 
the Earth's figure axis by 
6.7 inches. 



FIGURE 
AXIS 



NORTH-SOUTH 
AXIS 



One microsecond equals one-millionth of a second 
i human-eye blink takes 350,000 microseconds.) 



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DISASTER BY 
THE NUMBERS 




19.9 



FEET 

Distance Honshu 
Moved East After the 
Quake 



ILES 

Depth of Earthquake 

■* During the quake, the 
ocean floorjutted up 
about 130 feet and 
slipped over an area 
about 185 miles long 
and 90 miles wide. This 
thrust the water column 
upward, generating one 
tsunami that traveled 
east to California and 
another that headed 
west to Japan. 



500 



MPH 

Velocity of Tsunami 

^ In the open ocean, 
the tsunami wave 
nearly reached the 
speed of a commercial 
jet airliner. The wave 
slowed as it 
approached the coast, 
but the slope of the 
continental shelf 
boosted the wave's 
maximum height to 
121 feet. 



ntinental plate is 
sliding beneath the ■ 
North American plate, ■ 
causing tension. When 
this pressure was 
released in March, the 
land surged upward and 
east, causing a massive 
earthquake and shifting 
the location of Honshu. 



N SHEPPARD 



WAVE 

SLOWS BUT 

GROWS IN 

HEIGHT 




UPWARD 
WAVE 



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80 MILES 
TO COAST 

OF JAPAN 






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FEET OF 

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Circling 
Mercury 

NASA's Messenger probe 
completed a 6.5-year, S billion- 
mile journey to Mercury in March. 
The spacecraft, the first to enter 

Mercury's orbit, will spend a year 
studying the innermost planet in 
our solar system. 

— STEVE ROUSSEAU 

Why Mercury? Scientists are 
intrigued by Mercury because 
it has a metal-rich core that 
accounts for about 60 percent 
of the planet's mass, twice 
that of our solar system's 
other terrestrial planets- 
Venus, Earth and Mars. 

How did Mercury form? There 
are three competing theories, 
Messenger principal investiga- 
tor Sean Solomon says. One 
proposes that the planet, as it 
formed from a disk of material 
spiraling around the sun, 

retained metal while slower- 
moving rock-dust particles fell 
into the sun. A second theory 
states that Mercury developed 
while surrounded by super- 
heated gas that vaporized its 
crust and much of its mantle. 
The third holds that a collision 
stripped the planet of much of 
its surface, leaving a metal core 
and mantle much later. 

How can this probe settle the 
debate? Each theory would 
leave forensic clues that the 

probe can identity from orbit. 
Messenger's array of spec- 
trometers will determine the 
composition of minerals on 
Mercury's surface. 



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16 JUNE 2011 | POPULARMECHANICS.COM 

.net 



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TECH WATCH 



MODERN WARFARE 





Pilots Over Libya, 
in Their Own Words 

Combat came fast to the U.S. airmen called to perform the 
earliest missions over Libya this March. "Our ears perked up 
when the U.N. Security Council resolution was kicking off/' says Axle, a 
27-year-old F-15E Strike Eagle weapons system officer and one of the 
first airmen to participate in Operation Odyssey Dawn. (The Air Force 
asked PM to identify airmen only by their call signs.) "It did happen 
quick, but we're prepared to handle these things." On March 17, the 
United Nations council voted to establish a no-fly zone and use aircraft 
to form a protective cordon between rebels and the quickly advancing 
military of Libyan dictator Muammar Gaddafi. Within the week, Axle 
and his pilot, call sign Slam, flew from RAF Lakenheath, a British air 
base that hosts the 48th Fighter Wing, to Aviano Air Base in Italy. There 
theyjoined a cadre of French and British aircraft in sorties over 
defended Libyan airspace. "[In England] we support exercises for both 
the Air Force and NATO," Slam says. "It almost doubles the workload. 
But when something like this pops up, we've been training for it." Strike 

Eagles from Aviano destroyed radar stations, antiaircraft missiles and 
ground forces in armored vehicles. The pilots attacked targets, such as 
the radar sites, according to a strategic plan, but at other times they 
struck Gaddafi loyalists who were taking aggressive action against 
other Libyans. It took three days to reduce the antiaircraft defenses and 
form a no-fly zone. "During the flight briefings we find out specifically 
what we'll be striking that day," Axle says. "After that, we 'step to fly' 
and then go make it happen." — joe pappalardo 



pilot 



WEAPONS 

SYSTEM 

OFFICER 



1*3 




F-15E Strike Eagle 



Weapons: Ai r-to-grou nd 
bombs, rockets and 
missiles; 20-mm cannon. 

Targets: Radar sites, 
surface-to-air missile 
launchers, command-and- 
control hubs. 

Tactic: Fly high and use 
precision weapons. 




A-10 Thunderbolt n 

("Warthog") 



Weapons: 30-mm 
automatic cannon; AGM-65 
Maverick missiles. 

Targets: Tanks, armored 
personnel carriers, coastal 
patrol ships. 

Tactic: Swoop in low to fire 
cannon at close range. 




The 8lst Fighter Squadron just got back from Afghanistan, 
so we were already on a war footing. They told us where to 
go, and we were there in a couple of days." 



CAB. USAFA-10PILOT 



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WorldMags 



-> Thin-plank laminate flooring? We sliced it like cake in our test. A sandwich 
of medium-density fiberboard and particleboard studded with finishing 
nails? Toast. The Ridgid Twin Blade Saw ($150) is an equal-opportunity 
cutter, with no need to swap out its 5-inch blades. Versatile, yes, but this 
tool is really built for control. We liked the dual handles for a grinder-like 
prin. and the counter-rotating blades added stability and reduced kickback. 
, this novel design has a catch: Unlike a typical circ saw, it has no shoe to 



guide cuts, so it s best-suited for dispatching thinner materials, be they 

"\ sheet metal or copper tubing. — 





PHOTOGRAPH BY DEVON JARVIS 

■ « _ im 



> WorldMags 



POPULARMECHANICS.COM 



JUNE 2011 21 



WorldMags 




UPGRADE 









Remaking Beds 

-> Few things signal a 
well-maintained yard 
like a fresh edge on a 
garden bed. But 
keeping edges clean 
usually requires cutting 
a line with a shovel— 
and who has time for 
that? The Echo 
BRD-280 Bed 
Redefiner ($600) 
makes precision edging 
as simple as using a 
string trimmer— its 
28.1-cc engine 
provides the muscle 
for a six-fingered 
steel-and-carbide- 
tipped claw that does 
the dirty work for you. 
A single-purpose 
power tool at this price 
may be of most 
interest to professional 
landscapers, but we're 
not going to deny that 
our gardens could use 
a touchup. 




4G SHOWDOWN -» 

AT&T vs T-Mobile 

We sometimes wonder if this 4G thing could be any more confusing. There's 
no formal definition of what constitutes a 4G network, so the four major 
carriers have taken to applying the gee-whiz term to three different 
technologies. Not complicated enough for you? Consider this: One 4G tech, 
the HSPA+ used by AT&T and T-Mobile, is reallyjust an upgraded version of 
old 3G networks. HSPA+ should prove to be no more than stopgap tech: At 
press time, AT&T and T-Mobile were knee-deep in merger talks, and AT&T 
was promising to roll out a more powerful LTE 4G network. Still, we couldn't 
help but wonder how well the HSPA+ networks live up to their 4G billing, so 
we put them through a series of tests in the New York area, by glenn derene 







TESTED 
PHONE 



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SPEEDS 



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Double-Bag It 

i* Most sleeping bags are designed to handle only a 
narrow range of conditions, so the one that works for 
you in August could be inadequate come October. The 
Mountain Hardwear Down Flip 35/50 Sleeping Bag 
($1 75) features a rating for a mild 45 degrees F on 
one side, while the flip side provides heavier insulation 
that ratchets up the warmth as the mercury edges 
down to 35 F 



MOBILE 
HOTSPOT 



HTC Inspire 4G 



AVG. 2.03 Mbps* 

MAX. 3.07 Mbps 



• 



AVG. 0.29 Mbps 
MAX. 0.43 Mbps 



High-resolution 
YouTube videos 
buffered within 
seconds and played 
without a blip. 



• 



High-res YouTube and 
Netflix videos played 
with a minimum of 
glitches, and Web 
surfing was on par 
with home broadband. 
Cost: $25/month 






T-Mobile myTouch 4G 



AVG. 0.81 Mbps 
MAX. 1.33 Mbps 



AVG. 0.87 Mbps 
MAX. 1.39 Mbps 




The same high-res 
videos were inconsis- 
tent on the myTouch. 
Some loaded fast 
and played smoothly, 
others choked and 
stuttered. 



Web surfing was fast, 
but high-resolution 
videos played in fits 
and starts. Lower-res 
videos and music 



performed better. 
Cost: $10/month 



■ 



*Megabits per second 





JUNE 2011 LfPOPULARMECHANICS.COM 



> WorldMags 



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• 



UPGRADE 



PM FIELD TEST 



3D Glasses 




RealD © 
Stock 
Glasses 

(free at 

theaters) 



s if the $17 admission weren't enough, manufacturers are ■ 3D Experience 

betting that consumers will shell out big bucks for their own 
3D movie glasses. The promise: optics, comfort and style 
that put throwaway theater freebies to shame. But are the 
pricey specs worth it? To find out, I teamed up with two 
other PM editors to conduct a test at a screening of Drive 
Angry 3D— so you don't have to. Luckily, we weren't in 
search of cinematic excellence; we just wanted to judge how 

the glasses worked, bysethporges 




Gunnar © 

Optiks 
Phenom 

3D ($99) 




Marchon3D © 
M3D 

($99-$125) 




Oakley © 

3D 
Gascon 

($120) 





reald: The free glasses had a very 
impressive 3D effect. "The depth was as 
good as any of the expensive pairs/' 
says PM associate editor Erin McCarthy. 
But the flat lenses provided poor 
peripheral visibility, and one editor 
found the lenses to be a shade darker 
than the other pairs. 



gunnar: Though the lenses prod uced 
an adequate 3D effect, we all found 
them to be a tad small. The frames 
encroached on our field of vision, and at 
the peripheries, all we could see was a 
3D blur. 

MARCH0N3D: We all gave a thumbs-up 

to the large lenses, which completely 
encompassed our field of vision, giving 
us the most immersive experience. We 
were also unanimous in finding the 
glasses' 3D effect on par with that of 
the RealD control specs. The lone 
objection came from McCarthy, who 
says the "left lens seemed slightly 
darker than it should have been." 

oakley: We loved the Oakley's 3D 
performance. Still, no one was happy 
with the glare that the glossy white 
frames cast on the lenses. "It was hard 
to see popcorn through them," associate 
editor Harry Sawyers says. Fortunately, 
the Oakleys are also available with 
reflection-free black frames. 

I Fit and Comfort 

reald: While my colleagues found the 
free glasses surprisingly comfortable, I 
noticed that they had a tendency to 
slide down my nose. And then there's 
the general ickiness factor with 
theater-distributed glasses. I mean, who 
knows who else has worn them? 

gunnar: The lightweight magnesium- 
aluminum -a Hoy frames felt the most 
luxurious, sitting almost imperceptibly on 
the nose. (The other frames in the test 
were plastic.) We all loved the flexible 
hinges, which provided a nice fit despite 
our differing head shapes and sizes. 

marchon3D: Comfortable frames, a 
snug fit and large lenses made the 
Marchon3D the category winner. "I 
almost forgot I was wearing 3D 
glasses," Sawyers says. 

oakley: We all liked the fit, with one 
exception: McCarthy noted minor 
discomfort around her ears. "3D glasses 
are supposed to disappear, but I could 
really feel these," she says. 



BOTTOM LINE 



Though the Marchon3Ds provided the best overall experience, it's hard to view any of these specs as a must-buy yet. 
Still, it's nice to see manufacturers getting ahead of the curve, and besides, these shades aren't just for theaters— they 
make a nice coffee-table complement to the new wave of 3D TVs, which use the same type of glasses as cinemas. 



V) 



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26 JUNE 2011 I P0PULARMECHANICS.COM 



PHOTOGRAPH BY DEVON JARVIS 



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'Tis the season for 

Father's Day and 
college graduation. 

m 

But we would hate to see 
you resort to recognizing 
either with a necktie or 
a Starbucks card. 

Here are a few slightly more 
interesting ideas — from classic 
to of-the-moment—that any 
dad or grad might appreciate. 

BYSETH PORGES 



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There's a reason 
watches are go-to 
gifts: A good one lasts 
for decades. The 100- 
meter-water-resistant, 
stainless-stee 



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sophisticated, two 
things any dad can 
appreciate. 



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•j Outdoor kitchens can be a Cribs-like expense, costing as 
much as a car. The Weber Summit Grill Center With Social 
Area ($4500) has the same slick look and functionality of 
comparable units at a slightly less insane price. And unlike 
built-in rigs, it requires no permits, plumbers or electricians. 



GRAD 



Thanks to its 
specialized 
inserts, the 
Stok Charcoal 
Tower ($150) 
can swap out 
its 22%-inch 
grill grate for a 
pizza stone, 
griddle or 
veggie tray. 















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osphor E Ink 



to feature the Kindle 



tech s epic battery life 
and uncanny readability. 
Want to mix things up? 
Two modes let users 
switch between a 
numeric digital display 
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UPGRADE 




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The Fender Tele essentially defined the modern electric guitar. 

The new Fender 60th Anniversary Tele caster ($1900) retains 

the classic's look and sound— but you get to add the patina. 



GRAD 



The Mi sa Kitara D igi tal Guitar ( $960) is the perfect ax for the 
Guitar Hero generation. Instead of strings, players strum a 
multitouch screen and press fret buttons. Detractors might cal 
it a souped-up keytar, but this design makes it a cinch to nail 
notes and apply digital effects such as modulation, delay and 
distortion without the need for pedals or panels. 



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DAD 



He's not giving up 

his motorcycle, so 

give him this: 

Allowingjust 

84 dB of ambient 

noise to creep in 

at60mph, the 

Schuberth C3 

($700) may be 

the quietest 

flip-face helmet 

on the market. 





GRAD 



While road racers 
obsess over extra 
ounces adding 
seconds to their 
runs, even casual 
bikers can 
appreciate a 
barely there 
helmet. At less 
than 8 ounces, the 
Giro Aeon ($240) 
is the lightest 
full-featured bike 
helmet yet. 










■ 




30 JUNE 2011 I POPULARMECHANICS.COM 



> WorldMags 



WorldMags 




UPGRADE 



Pinball and the Rolling 
Stones are two things that 
many people wrongly 
assume are dead. The Stern 
Rolling Stones Pinball 
Machine ($4700) combines 
the two baby-boomer icons 
in one game- room-friendly 
nostalgia trip. 





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It's on like Donkey Kong. The sci-fi style and spill-proof 
enclosure of the Stealth Arcade Table ($3300) conceal a 
preinstalled stash of 60 iconic arcade games and a 
bass-heavy speaker system that lets you crank the classic 
beeps and blips up and down. Ms. Pac-Man never 
looked— or sounded— so good. 





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about to double down. Sometime later this year, an 
enthusiast-focused R version will debut with a more 
powerful 2.0-liter turbo four-cylinder (for roughly 55 
more hp than the GTI's 200), larger brakes, firmer 
suspension and a six-speed manual gearbox. To 
handle the extra power, all Rs will also have an 
all-wheel-drive system, which has the added effect of 
altering the weight balance slightly rearward. On the 
curvy roads outside Geneva, Switzerland, the R's 
composure trumped even the GTI's, something we 
didn't think possible. It bites into corners aggressively 
and perfectly balances both ends. Available in both 
two- and four-door bodies, the R is fabulously 
well-tuned, but there is a price to pay: about 
$33,000, or 10 grand more than a GTI. 

— BEN WOJDYLA 




$ WorldMags 



POPULARMECHANICS.COM I JUNE 2011 33 



NEW CARS 




WorldMags 



2012 Nissan Murano 
CrossCa brio let 




NISSAN'S CROSSOVER CROSSES OVER , Chopping the 

roof and removing two doors from Nissan's Murano crossover is not an idea 
that has crossed many minds. Yet Nissan recently introduced the CrossCa brio- 
let, a tall, four-seat convertible, priced at $46,390, that the company expects 
will appeal to affluent middle-aged women. We don't know about the 
demographic, but based on a brief drive through the coastal suburb of 
Brentwood, Calif., the CrossCa briolet has some things going for it. Motivated 
by a 265-hp V6, this 5300-pound sun worshipper won't win over anyone 
looking for a sporty ragtop, because of its large footprint and elevated stance. 
But for a leisurely drive when the weather's right, we imagine there could be a 
small handful of folks who might find benefit in this oddball convertible that 
also boasts enough cargo capacity for two golf bags. — BASEM WASEF 



2012 Mazda5 





RIGHT-SIZED VAN , The Mazda5 is about 2 feet shorter and 
10 inches narrower than a conventional minivan, but it still has those handy 
sliding rear doors and three rows of seats. Inside, it's comparatively 
snug— naturally— but the kids won't miss the extra space. The parents will 
appreciate the great compromise between comfort and control, and the 
levels of refinement are good enough to provide a reassuring film of luxury 
between you and the gritty reality of modern travel. With accurate, tactile 
steering and nimble handling, it never feels like a minivan— until the doors are 
slid open and six people are securely seated. Plus, the 2.5-liter engine returns 
decent fuel economy (21/28) and is available with either a six-speed manual 
or five-speed automatic. A minivan with a stick? That's almost . . . cool. The 
Mazda5 isn't downsized, it's right-sized. — BARRY WINF1ELD 



Glass-Ro ofRo adster 

> The revised SLK draws inspiration from the 
SLS AMG supercar, but this roughly $50,000 
roadster is far more attainable. Beneath its 
masculine skin, a new direct-injected 302-hp V6 
and seven-speed automatic have been revised 
for snappier acceleration and thriftier fuel 
sipping. We enjoyed the SLK350's stiffer 
suspension and zesty performance while 
squirting around the Canary island of Tenerife, 
and were equally impressed with the Magic Sky 
Control roof, which switches the glass's tint from 
opaque to transparent at the touch of a button. 
Next year, the SLK250 arrives with a turbo 
201-hp 1.8-liter four-cylinder that offers a lighter, 
nimbler package. — basem wasef 



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34 JUNE 2011 | POPULARMECHANICS.COM 



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NEW CARS 



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2011 Ford F-150 SVT 

Raptor SuperCrew 



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# The Raptor is an off-road terror, but 
consumers wanted more utility. So for 
2011, the Raptor is available in the 
longer, four-door SuperCrew body 
style. In addition to extra rear-seat 
legroom, the Raptor SuperCrew 
boasts 8000 pounds of towing 
capacity (versus 6000) and carries 
1030 pounds of cargo (a 100-pound 
improvement) and 36 gallons of fuel 
(up by 10). The standard 411-hp 
6.2-liter V8 couples to a six-speed 
automatic with new SelectShift 
electronics, giving the driver full control 
of the gears. Similarly, a new 4.2-inch 
LCD between the primary gauges 
helps drivers choose among several 
modes of operation— the system 
works through a "truck app" controlled 
by a five-way switch on the steering 
wheel. SVT revised the suspension and 
steering gear to make the SuperCrew 
behave as much like the SuperCab as 
possible, and we only noticed the 
difference in tight quarters, where the 
extra length impedes maneuverability. 

— KEVIN A. WILSON 



2012 BMW 

K 1600 GT 




SIX APPEAL 1 Having come close to perfecting the inline six-cylinder 
engine for cars, BMW has now installed a straight six in an all-new sport 
tourer, the K 1600 GT. This compact 1.6-liter motor is no wider than a typical 
four-cylinder, yet it spins with a creaminess few engines can match. Plus, its 
low-end grunt is prodigious, and the available 160 hp accelerates the 
700-pound-plus machine with authority. BMW's control-arm front suspension 
and single-sided rear swing arm provide stability whether you're cruising in a 
straight line or leaned over, dragging metal in the twisties. The GT comes with 
traction control, linked ABS, cruise control and heated seat and grips, and is 
topped off with an innovative self-leveling headlight. An amalgam of visceral 
performance and luscious sounds, the $20,900 K 1600 GT is certain to 
redefine the boundaries of what sport touring is all about. — JEFF BUCHANAN 



2012 AcuraTL 




AUTO RHINOPLASTY # The TL's anvil-like nose visually detracted 

from what was otherwise a perfectly competent sport sedan, so the TL's 
front end and numerous other details have been updated for 2012. While the 
new visage is gentler on the eyes, the TL still doesn't turn heads like an Audi 
A4 or Cadillac CTS. Yet thanks to mechanical changes— sharper steering and 
snappier shifts from the six-speed auto— and high reliability and resale value, 
it remains a solid choice. The returning 3.5-liter 280-hp V6 for the front-driver 
($35,605) and a 3.7-liter V6 good for 305 hp in the super-handling-AWD 
edition ($39,155) have been tuned for higher efficiency, and continue to 
deliverfree-rewing performance. Enthusiasts will want the SH-AWD model 
with the optional manual gearbox and 19-inch summer tires. It's eager and 
light on its tires— the best-handling of the bunch. — MICHAEL FRANK 






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Despite the fact that Switzerland has no automotive industry of 
ts own, the Geneva Motor Show is arguably Europe's most 
important new-car event. As in recent years, the 2011 show was 
a fascinating dichotomy of exotic, mega-horsepower machines 
from Ferrari and Porsche and high-technology fuel sippers. 
Here's a sample of the new-car introductions. For more, visit 
popularmechanics.com — basem wasef 





VW BULLI CONCEPT 

e Bulli is VW's second Microbus-inspired concept. This one is 
smaller than a current minivan, more like a Nissan Cube, and is 
electrically powered. The interior is clean and airy, with a slick gauge 
pack and an integral iPad dock serving as the center stack. Officially, 
jthe Bulli isn't set for production, but VW is clearly experimenting with 
ways to bring this design to market. 



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8 JUNE 2011 I R0PULARMECHANICS.COM 

)rld/v\ags 



LAMBORGHINI 
AVENTADOR LP700-4 

Although Lamborghini's Aventador LP 700-4 
maintains the Italian manufacturer's 
tradition of naming its flagship after a deadly 
bull, the low-slung supercar bears virtually 
no resemblance to the Murcielago it 
replaces. The Aventador is 200 pounds 
lighter than its tube-framed predecessor, 
thanks to a carbon-fiber monocoque chassis, 
and the 6.5-liter V12 belts out 691 hp. 






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Hybrids have always been a good idea. They've just never been exhilarating to drive. 



The Infiniti M Hybrid changes all that. Its Direct Response Hybrid" system uses 



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acceleration of a true luxury sports sedan. As the only car in America with 360 horsepower 






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Learn more about the Infiniti M Hybrid at lnffnitiUSA.com, 

Hybrid System Net PoweT-360 hp„ **Based on 2012 tPA highway fuel economy estimates. Actual mileage may vary with 

driving conditions. Use- for comparison only. Always wear your seat belU and please don't drink and drive, ©2011 INFINITI. 








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Cymbalta can help. 

Cymbalta is approved by the FDA for the 

management of chronic musculoskeletal pain in people with 

chronic osteoarthritis pain and chronic low back pain. 



There is good news. 

When taken once a day, every day, Cymbalta can help 
significantly reduce your chronic osteoarthritis pain or 
chronic low back pain. It is a non-narcotic f non-NSAID 
prescription medicine. 

Did you know that your body has a natural pain-suppressing 
system that can help regulate the amount of pain you feel? 

Although the exact way that Cymbalta works to reduce chronic 
osteoarthritis pain or chronic low back pain is unknown, it is 
believed that Cymbalta helps lessen pain by enhancing the 
body's natural pain-suppressing system by increasing the activity 
of serotonin and norepinephrine in the brain and spinal cord. 

Visit cymbalta.com or call 1-877-CYMBALTAto learn more. 
Ask your doctor about Cymbalta. 

Cymbalta is approved for the management of chronic 
musculoskeletal pain in people with chronic osteoarthritis 
pain and chronic low back pain. 

Important Safety Information About Cymbalta 

The most important information you should know 
about Cymbalta: 



Antidepressants can increase suicidal thoughts and 
behaviors in children, teens, and young adults. 
Suicide is a known risk of depression and some other 
psychiatric disorders. Call your doctor right away if 
you have new or worsening depression symptoms, 
unusual changes in behavior, or thoughts of suicide. 
Be especially observant within the first few months of 
treatment or after a change in dose. Approved only for 
adults 18 and over. 



Cymbalta® (duloxetine HCI) is not for everyone. 
Do not take Cymbalta if you: 

• have recently taken a type of antidepressant called a 
Monoamine Oxidase Inhibitor (MAOI) or Mellaril* (thioridazine) 

• have uncontrolled narrow-angle glaucoma (increased 
eye pressure) 

Talk with your healthcare provider: 

• about all your medical conditions, including kidney or liver 
problems, glaucoma, diabetes, seizures, or if you have 
bipolar disorder. Cymbalta may worsen a type of glaucoma 
or diabetes 

• if you have itching, right upper belly pain, dark urine, yellow 
skin/eyes, or unexplained flu-like symptoms while taking 
Cymbalta, which may be signs of liver problems. Severe 
liver problems, sometimes fatal, have been reported 

• about your alcohol use 



• about all your medicines, including those for migraine, to 
address a potentially life-threatening condition. Symptoms 
may include high fever, confusion, and stiff muscles 

• if you are taking NSAID pain relievers, aspirin, or blood 
thinners, Use with Cymbalta may increase bleeding risk 

• before stopping Cymbalta or changing your dose 

• if you experience dizziness or fainting upon standing while 
taking Cymbalta. This is likely to occur in the first week or 
when increasing the dose, but may occur at any time 
during treatment 

• about your blood pressure. Cymbalta can increase your 
blood pressure. Your healthcare provider should check 
your blood pressure prior to and while taking Cymbalta 

• if you experience headache, weakness, confusion, 
problems concentrating, memory problems, or feel 
unsteady while taking Cymbalta, which may be signs of 
low sodium levels 

• if you develop problems with urine flow while taking Cymbalta 

• if you are pregnant or plan to become pregnant during 
therapy, or are breast-feeding 

Most common side effects of Cymbalta 
(this is not a complete list): 

• nausea, dry mouth, sleepiness, fatigue t constipation, 
dizziness, decreased appetite, and increased sweating 

You are encouraged to report negative side effects of 
Prescription drugs to the FDA. Visit www.fda.gov/medwatch 
orcall1-800-FDA-1088. 

Other safety information about Cymbalta: 

Cymbalta may cause sleepiness and dizziness. Until you 
know how Cymbalta affects you, you should not drive a car 
or operate hazardous machinery. 

How to take Cymbalta: 

Take Cymbalta exactly as directed by your healthcare provider. 
Cymbalta should be taken by mouth. Do not open, break or 
chew capsule, it must be swallowed whole. Cymbalta can be 
taken with or without food. 

DDCON-AISI10NOV10 

See back page for additional Information For Patients 
About Cymbalta, including Boxed Warning. 




Cymbalta 

duloxetine HC 



DELAYED 
RELEASE 

CAPSULES 



Cymbalta can help. 




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Partnership for 
frgstriptitin Awista; 




WorldMags 



If you need assistance with prescription 
costs, help may be available, 

Visltwww.pparx.org or call 1-888-4PPA-NOW. 




WorldMags 




Please read this information carefully before 
you, or your family member start taking 

Cymbalta (sim-BALL-tah), and each time 
your prescription is refilled, in case anything 
has changed or new information has become 
available. This information is not meant to 
take the place of discussions with your 
healthcare provider. Talk with your healthcare 
provider or pharmacist if there is something 
you do not understand or if you want to 
learn more about Cymbalta. Always follow 
your healthcare provider's instructions for 
taking Cymbalta. 

What is the most important information 
should know about Cymbalta? 



Warning: In clinical studies, antidepressants 
increased the risk of suicidal thinking 
and behavior in children, adolescents, and 
young adults with depression and other 
psychiatric disorders. Anyone considering 
the use of Cymbalta or any other 
antidepressant must balance this risk with 
the clinical need. Short-term studies did 
not show an increase in the risk of suicidal 
thinking or behavior with antidepressants 
in adults older than 24; there was a 
reduction in risk with antidepressants in 
adults 65 and older. Suicide is a known 
risk of depression and some other 
psychiatric disorders. All patients starting 
antidepressant therapy should be 
monitored appropriately and observed 
closely. Families and caregivers should 
discuss with the healthcare provider right 
away any observations of worsening 
depression symptoms, suicidal thinking and 
behavior, or unusual changes in behavior. 
Cymbalta is not approved for use in patients 
underage 18. 




Patients on antidepressants and their families 
or caregivers should watch for new or 
worsening depression symptoms, unusual 
changes in behavior, and thoughts of suicide, 
as well as for anxiety, agitation, panic attacks, 
difficulty sleeping, irritability, hostility, 
aggressiveness, impulsivity, restlessness, 
or extreme hyperactivity. Call your healthcare 
provider right away if you have thoughts of 
suicide or if any of these symptoms are severe 
or occur suddenly. Be especially observant 
within the first few months of treatment or 
whenever there is a change in dose. 

What is Cymbalta? 

Cymbalta is a prescription medicine that 
is approved to treat multiple conditions. 
Cymbalta is approved for the treatment of 
major depressive disorder (MDD), also 
called depression; generalized anxiety 

disorder (GAD); for the management of 
fibromyalgia (FM); the management of 
diabetic peripheral neuropathic pain (DPNP), 
also called diabetic nerve pain; and for 
chronic musculoskeletal pain, including the 
management of chronic pain due to 
osteoarthritis and chronic low back pain. 

Who should NOT take Cymbalta? 

You should not take Cymbalta if: 
• You are taking a type of antidepressant 
known as a Monoamine Oxidase Inhibitor 
(MAO I), such as Nardil® (phenelzine 
sulfate), Parnate* (tranylcypromine sulfate), 
or Emsam • (selegiline transdermal system). 
Using an MAOI with many prescription 



medicines, including Cymbalta, can cause 
serious or even life-threatening reactions. 
You must wait at least 14 days after you 
have stopped taking an MAOI before you 
take Cymbalta. You need to wait at least 
5 days after you stop taking Cymbalta 
before you take an MAOI 

■ You have uncontrolled narrow-angle 
glaucoma (increased eye pressure) 

• You are taking an antipsychotic medicine 
known as Mellaril® (thioridazine) 

What should I talk to my 
healthcare provider about? 

Talk with your healthcare provider: 

• About any medical conditions you may 
have, including kidney or liver problems, 

glaucoma, diabetes, seizures, or if you have 
bipolar disorder. Cymbalta may worsen a 
type of glaucoma or the control of blood 
sugar in some patients with diabetes 

• If you have itching, right upper belly pain, 
dark urine t yellow skin/eyes, or unexplained 
flu-like symptoms while taking Cymbalta, 
which may be signs of liver problems. 
Severe liver problems, sometimes fatal, 
have been reported 

• About your alcohol use 

• If you are taking or plan to take any 
prescription or nonprescription medicines, 
as Cymbalta may interact with some of 
these products 

• If you take medications known as triptans, 
commonly prescribed for migraines. 

A potentially life-threatening condition 
may occur when triptans are used with 
Cymbalta. Symptoms may include high 
fever, confusion, and stiff muscles 

• If you take NSAID pain relievers, aspirin, 
or blood thinners, as these medications 
may increase risk of bleeding when used 
with Cymbalta 

• Before stopping Cymbalta or changing 
your dose. Stopping Cymbalta may result 
in symptoms including dizziness, nausea, 
or headache (not a complete list). Your 
healthcare provider may wish to decrease 
the dose slowly 

• If you are pregnant, plan to become 
pregnant, or are breast-feeding 

• If you experience dizziness or fainting 
upon standing while taking Cymbalta. This 
is likely to occur in the first week or when 
increasing the dose, but may occur at any 

time during treatment, or when used in 
combination with certain other drugs 

• About your blood pressure. Cymbalta can 
increase your blood pressure. Your healthcare 
provider should check your bfood pressure 
prior to and while taking Cymbalta 

• If you experience headache, weakness, 
confusion, problems concentrating, 
memory problems, or feel unsteady while 
taking Cymbalta, which may be signs of low 

sodium levels 

■ If you develop problems with urine flow 

while taking Cymbalta 

What should I avoid while 
taking Cymbalta? 

• Cymbalta may cause sleepiness and 
dizziness. Until you know how Cymbalta 
affects you, you should not drive a car or 
operate hazardous machinery. 



What are the most common side 
effects of Cymbalta? 

n clinical studies for approved indications 
(depression, generalized anxiety disorder, 
diabetic nerve pain, fibromyalgia, and 
chronic musculoskeletal pain, including 
chronic pain due to osteoarthritis pain 

and chronic low back pain), the most 
common side effect was nausea. 

• Other common side effects included dry 
mouth, sleepiness, fatigue, constipation, 

dizziness, decreased appetite, and 
increased sweating. 

This is not a complete list of side effects. 

See Boxed Warning, "Who should NOT 
take Cymbalta?" and "What should I talk 
to my healthcare provider about?" See full 
prescribing information at www.cymbalta.com. 

Talk to your healthcare provider if you have 
questions or develop any side effects. 

You are encouraged to report negative 
side effects of prescription drugs to the 

FDA. Visit www.fda.gov/medwatch, or 
call 1-800-FDA-1088. 



What should I do if I think I have taken 
an overdose of Cymbalta? 

If you have taken more Cymbalta than has 
been prescribed for you, contact your 
healthcare provider, a hospital emergency 
department, or the nearest poison control 
center immediately. 

How should I take Cymbalta? 

• Take Cymbalta exactly as directed by 
your healthcare provider. 

• Cymbalta should be taken by mouth. 
Do not open, break, or chew the capsule; 
it must be swallowed whole. 

• Cymbalta can be taken with or without food. 

• If you miss a dose, take it as soon as you 
remember. However, if it is time for your 
next dose, skip the missed dose and take 
only your regularly scheduled dose. Do 
not take more than the daily amount of 
Cymbalta that has been prescribed for you. 

• Remember to refill your prescription 
before you run out of Cymbalta, 

• Talk with your healthcare provider before 
stopping Cymbalta or changing your dose. 

General advice about Cymbalta 

• Store Cymbalta at room temperature and 
out of the reach of children. 

• Medicines are sometimes prescribed for 
purposes other than the ones listed. This 
medication has been prescribed for your 
particular condition. Do not use it for 
another condition or give this drug to 
anyone else. 

• If you have any questions or concerns, 
want to report any problems with the use of 
Cymbalta, or want more information, contact 
your healthcare provider or pharmacist. 

Additional information can be found at 

www.cymbalta.com. 

Eli Lilly and Company 
Lilly Corporate Center 
Indianapolis, IN - USA 

Mellaril, Nardil, Parnate, and Emsam are 
registered trademarks of their manufacturers. 

DD70207 © 2011 Lilly USA, LLC. All rights reserved. 
Cymbalta is a registered trademark of Eli Lilly and Company. 

DD CON BS17NOV10PV 7213 amp 



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BUSINESS 



NEW CARS 




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au i o show 




ALFA ROMEO 4C CONCEPT 

We hate to get our hopes up, but the 4C will go into production by 
2014, and there's a strong chance that it'll come to the United 
States. Its specs are as delicious as its skin: a turbocharged 
four-cylinder engine and a twin-clutch gearbox mounted behind the 
seats, rear-wheel drive and an aluminum chassis. The weight target is 
around 2000 pounds. Still, don't expect this beauty to be affordable. 




MORGAN 3 WHEELER 

There hasn't been a Morgan trike since 1953, but that's about to 
change. The new 3 Wheeler tips the scales at just 1100 pounds and 
uses a 115-hp Harley-Davidson V-twin— the first Morgans were also 
powered by motorcycle engines in 1911— to drive a Mazda 
five-speed manual. It should scoot to 60 mph in a scant 4.5 seconds 
and offer the ethereal cornering capabilities the marque is known for. 






INFINITI ETHEREA 

The line between hatchbacks and sedans is blurring— witness the 
BMW 5 Series GT— and soon Infiniti will have its own segment- 
busting car. Due to arrive in Europe first, the Etherea drives the front 
wheels with a gas-electric hybrid powertrain. When it does reach 
production, the car won't have the rear-hinged rear doors. However, 
several design elements, such as the headlights and grille, will remain 










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SUBARU 
SPORTS 
CONCEPT 

Subaru and Toyota 
a re jointly 
developing a 
moderately priced 
two- pi us- two 
sports coupe. 
We've seen 
Toyota's version, 
the FT-86. But all 
we have so far for 
the Subaru are 
mechanical details. 
Coming about a 
year from now, 
both cars will use 
the Impreza's 
150-hp flat-four 
engine, manual 
transmission and 
rear-wheel drive. If 
the car meets the 
under-3000-pound 
weight target, it 
could be an 
energetic sportster. 



* 




44 JUNE 2011 I .POPULARMECHANICS.COM 



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TM Lorillard Licensing Company LLC Reg, U-S, Pat, & Tm, Oft, 



SURGEON GENERAL'S WARNING: Cigarette 
Smoke Contains Carbon Monoxide. 



NEW CARS 




WorldMags 



Teachina Teen Drivers 




w 



Parents who want to maximl?§ their kids' safety behind the wheel need 
to do more than shuttle their offspring to state-sanctioned driver's ed 
programs. For about the cost of a year's worth of dance or piano 
lessons, they can get trained in advanced skills, byrexroy 






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arents can be quick to pay for music lessons or sports 
leagues for their children, but there's one critical area 
that is often overlooked— driver training. And often, 
top-flight instruction that goes beyond teaching traffic 
signs and delves into car control costs less than a 
week at sleep-away camp. 

According to the Centers for Disease Control, 
teens crash at four times the rate of older drivers, 
and car crashes are the leading cause of teen 
mortality. Some programs have helped reduce the 
risk— graduated licenses that keep adolescents off the 
road late at night, for example— but our nation's 
behind-the-wheel instruction is lacking. 

Currently, individual states regulate driver's ed. 
Requirements vary. Usually, these programs rely on 
classroom instruction to teach critical car-control 
maneuvers. Yes, all of us have been told to "steer into 
the skid." But without actually experiencing how 
turning the steering wheel in the same direction that 
the back end is fishtailing can arrest the slide, how 
meaningful is that tip? 



The skid-control car uses hydraulic rams and caster wheels mounted on outriggers to simu 
late vehicle slides. From inside this fantastic teaching tool, the instructor can make the car 
fishtail or plow so the student can safely practice recovery techniques. 



At best, the teaching materials 
provide only the most basic informa- 
tion: Don't drink and drive, fasten safety 
belts, etc. At worst, the information is 
inaccurate or out-of-date. For example, 
Michigan teens are taught to hold the 
steering wheel at the 8 and 4 o'clock 
position, to protect the driver's wrists in 
the event of an airbag deployment. 

But pros know better. According to 
Ford's driving safety guru, Kevin 
Markham, "hands go at 9 and 3, a 
position that allows for quick and 
accurate emergency responses from 
the muscles in wrists and arms." As far 
as wrist safety, "the 9-and-3 position 
keeps hands and arms away from a 
deploying airbag," Markham says. 

Many countries require more 
rigorous training than the U.S. German 
drivers must complete expensive 
private instruction (for approximately 
$2500), and the U.K. offers a challeng- 
ing advanced driving curriculum that 
nets drivers reduced insurance 
premiums. Finland has arguably the 
best program: In addition to 20 
classroom hours on vehicle dynamics 
(why cars handle the way they do), 
students receive 30 hours of in-car 
instruction. And that includes skid- 
control sessions on a closed course. 

No U.S. state requires the training 
equivalent of what's found in those 
countries. But some Americans do get 
good training— cops, for instance. "Our 
police cadets spend a minimum of 16 to 
24 hours behind the wheel practicing 



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46 JUNE2011nUfPOPULARMECHANICS.COM 

- m m — 



> WorldMags 



LLUSTRATION BY PATSWERK 



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the vehicle skills we believe all 
emergency responders should have/' 
says Charles Craft, the director of the 
Macomb Regional Police Academy in 
Michigan. The academy employs 
many of the same tools used at 
racing schools, including a skid car, 
which is a vehicle equipped with 
hydraulically actuated outriggers that 
can induce fishtai ling— what s known 
as oversteer in racing circles— with 
the press of a button. "I think it's 
incumbent on parents to do more 
to educate their teen drivers," Craft 
says, "and while they're at it, 
parents should learn more about 
driving themselves." 

American parents don't have 
access to police trainers, but they 
can procure excellent driving 
instruction for their kids. A number 
of high-performance driving schools 
offer courses for beginning drivers. 
For example, the Bob Bondurant 
School in Phoenix uses a skidpad 
-basically a large paved 
-and a skid car to allow drivers 



area 
field- 



to experience slides and practice 
recovery techniques. Courses range 
from half-day sessions ($495) to 
comprehensive three-day experi- 




ences 

Can't make it to Arizona? The 
Skip Barber Racing School operates 
at 12 tracks across the country and 
trains teens using a one-day course 
($999) that emphasizes skid control, 
vehicle dynamics and street 
awareness. In Ohio, the Mid-Ohio 
School runs an AAA-approved 
one-day defensive-driving course for 
teens ($375). Graduates are eligible 
for an insurance discount through 
Westfield Insurance. 

Dozens of other advanced 
driving programs are offered across 
the country. Choose one that 
maximizes wheel time and enables 
students to explore a vehicle's 
at-the-limit braking and handling 
performance. As in sports, muscle 
memory matters. Longer courses 
provide more practice sessions for 
emergency evasive maneuvers; this 
repetition is critical to long-lasting 
training, pm 



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FIRST report 



Having named the Grand Cherokee 

one of 2011's 10 best cars and generally 
applauded its character, we decided on 

an extended test to see if the shine 
would dull with familiarity. We picked 
the Overland edition, the highest trim 
level, because it includes air suspension 
and can be had with a V6 engine. The 
Overland stickers at $41,900— high, yes, 
but this is one richly detailed, feature- 
laden SUV. It can easily compete with 
other vehicles in this price range. In 



addition to items like heated and cooled 
seats and a heated wood steering wheel, 
there's also contrasting piping on the 
leather seats, and the console is covered 
with a handsome brushed-metal finish. 
But with all those luxuries, it's still a 
capable SUV. Beached on a snowdrift in 
a Midwestern blizzard, we pressed a 
button that quickly raised the chassis 
and provided enough ground clearance 
to get us back on our way. Yep, it's a 

Jeep. — LARRY WEBSTER 



STATISTICS 

Base price: 

$41,900 
As tested: 

$45,480 

Extra-cost 

options: 

Forward collision 
warning, blind- 
spot monitoring, 
radar cruise con- 
trol, rear DVD 

entertainment 
center, power 
sunroof 
Drivetrain: 
3.6-liter V6, 5A, 
AWD 
Engine 

performance: 
290 hp, 
260 Ib-ft 
EPA fuel 
economy: 16 
city/22 highway 




48 JUNE 2011 | POPULARMECHANICS.COM 



> WorldMags 



PHOTOGRAPH BY MICHAEL NEMETH 



WorldMags 





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DRIVERS 
NOTEBOOK 

• The gas and 

brake pedals are 



close together. It's 
a placement 
appreciated by 
enthusiasts who 
like to blip the 

throttle while 
braking and 
downshifting 



(although ours has 
an automatic 
gearbox), but 
commuters may 
find it annoying. 
The rear seatbelt 
latches are 
recessed deep in 
the seat cushions, 
making it tough for 
small kids to 
fasten themselves. 



DATA SO FAR 

As tested: 

$17,275 

Previous 

reports: 

See 03/1 1 
Miles driven: 
6613 

/Wiles since 
iast report: 
2031 



Fuel economy: 

Average— 

30.3 mpg 

Worst— 24.8 mpg 
Best — 34.7 mpg 
Maintenance/ . 



repair since last 
report: $0 



PM LONG-TERM TEST CARS 



Mazda2 Touring 



SECOND report 

This scrappy hatchback continues to 
get high marks. True, its acceleration is 
mediocre at best, and at higher speeds, 
the engine has the sound of a window 
fan on full blast— but behind the wheel, 
you feel like one of those diminutive 
athletes whose deft moves make up for 
his size. On curvy roads, it's almost 
zippy. The back seat claims to accommo- 
date three. However, those folks had 
better be very thin and very compatible. 
It did carry two young boys on a trip to 
the Berkshire Hills in Massachusetts, 
and the cargo space held enough 
clothing, gear and footwear to permit a 
couple of days' hiking in uncertain 
weather. Also, there's something 
refreshing about driving a brand-new car 
with dials and knobs instead of all-digital 

controls. This car is far from perfect. It 
bounces around a bit in high winds. Still, 
considering the price tag and the stellar 
mileage, combined with the surprising 
fun factor, those faults don't seem like 
deal breakers. — michael s. cain 





Hyundai Sonata SE 



The Hyundai Sonata almost seems to exist to thumb its front 
fender at cars like the Toyota Camry— practical, reliable, but 
yawningly boring midsize sedans. The sheet metal has sharp, 
windswept lines that look like a pair of knife swipes tracing the 
flanks, while the driving experience dispels any notion that an 
everyday car has to feel like an appliance. Our SE model is 
always in high demand among the staff, both for its engaging 
demeanor and its surprisingly roomy cabin— in just 10 months, 
it's racked up 14,800 trouble-free miles. The nonturbocharged 
2.4-liter four-cylinder (Hyundai offers a turbo version but no V6 
in the Sonata) delivers plenty of power— still, some drivers 
reported a high-rpm whine that probably wouldn't be present 
with a V6. The smaller engine has yielded good fuel economy, 
though— the Sonata is averaging 27.9 mpg and regularly gets 
above 30. Inside, the Sonata's design is elegant and straightfor 
ward, with nice touches like a leather-wrapped steering wheel 
and shifter that belie the $25,330 price. — glenn derene 



THIRD report 



t . 



J 1 ^ 







DRIVERS 
NOTEBOOK 



• A few passengers have complained that 
the seats are stiff. 

• Even onlookers appreciate the Sonata's 
design: Among other unsolicited positive 
remarks, we got a "nice car" comment in 
Queens, N.Y. 



DATA SO FAR 

As tested: $25,330 
Previous reports: 
See 12/10,03/11 
Miles driven: 

14,800 



Miles since last 
report: 6692 
Fuel economy: 

Average— 27.9 mpg 
Worst— 17.5 mpg 
Best— 34.4 mpg 



Maintenance/ 
repair since last 
report: $0 
Overall: $33 



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50 JUNE 2011 J-fPOPULARMECHANICS.COM 



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WorldMags 



Diesel engines used to demand a 
certain patience in winter. Drivers had to 
wait for the engine's glow plugs to warm 
before starting the car, then ride in a 
freezing cabin while the motor took 
forever to heat up (the diesel's higher 
compression ratio means more of the 
combustion heat is used to drive the 
pistons rather than to warm the coolant). 
The X5's motor, however, fired immedi- 
ately even on subzero mornings, and the 
standard electric heater made the cabin 
toasty in mere minutes. As we ve said 
before, there's no penalty for the diesel's 



fuel economy, which proved remarkable— 
nearly 25 mpg over 16,000 miles. 
Furthermore, even when towing another 
car— the X5 can handle 6000 pounds— it 
still achieved 18 mpg. Factor in the X5's 
free maintenance and the fact that 
nothing went wrong during its stay, and 
we're left grumbling only about the 
$61,025 price. Most diesel engines are 
available in a handful of similarly spendy 
vehicles, a shame because a modern 
diesel is no more expensive than a 
hybrid— maybe less— and would work 
perfectly in moderately priced cars. — lw. 



o 



BMW X5 xDrive35d 



FINAL report 



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DRIVERS 



^ 



NOTEBOOK 

At parking-lot 



speeds, the 
steering requires 
some muscle. 



■ 



■ 



♦ 



* • 



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& 



■ 



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While the power 
tailgate is handy 
when your hands 



are full, it's slow to 

rise. Plus, 
engaging th 
button on the 
hatch requires a 



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END DATA 

As tested: 

$61,025 

Previous 

reports: 

See 08/10, 
12/10,03/11 
Miles driven: 
15,927 



lies since last 
report: 3506 
Fuel economy: 



Average— 

24.9 mpg 
Worst— 16.2 mpg 

Best— 30.6 mpg 
Maintenance/ 
repair since last 
report: $0 
Overall: $0 



. 



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PHOTOGRAPH BY NOAH SHELDON 



> WorldMags 



POPULARMECHANICS.COM 



JUNE 2011 51 



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VITAL 
STATISTICS 

Base price: 

$26,100 
As tested: 

$28,165 (both 
prices include the 
$7500 federal tax 
rebate) 
Extra-cost 
options: Solar- 
panel rear spoiler, 
rearview camera, 
garage-door 



opener, quick- 
charge port 
Drivetrain: 
AC synchronous 
electric motor, 
24-kwh lithium-ion 
battery pack 
Engine 

performance: 
107 hp, 
207 Ib-ft 
Range: 100 miles 



DRIVERS 
NOTEBOOK 



Our Leaf 
employs Nissan's 
reliable 
navigation/ 
communication 

interface. Syncing 
a phone via 



Bluetooth is 



seamless. 
There's so much 
data available to 
track the Leaf's 
energy usage, 
sometimes it's 
hard to keep your 
eyes on the road. 



o 




2011 Nissan LeafSL 



FIRST REPORT 



The line between our cars and gadgets is collapsing fast. After three weeks with the 
Leaf, we're getting used to plugging in our vehicle just like our cellphones and iPads. 
Nissan strongly recommends that Leaf owners install a 240-volt charging station— it 
costs about $2000, including installation— to reduce charge time to about 8 hours. We 
installed the charger at PM's home, the Hearst Tower, which is now the first office 
building in New York City with the device. But the Leaf also comes with a cable that 
can plug into any 120-volt outlet, "mat's the mode PM editors use at home, though a 
full charge takes about 20 hours. Even so, with my 40-mile-round-trip commute, I 
found I could easily make it through the week without having to charge up at work. So, 
how does it drive? Pretty zippy, actually. Putting the pedal down at any speed 
produces a satisfying surge of torque. Of course, in an EV you tend to watch the range 
readout more than the speedometer, and even brief spurts of spirited driving— and use 
of the heater— take their toll on how far you can travel. Still, keeping obsessive track of 
energy consumption is part of the nerdy pleasure of driving this car. — jim meigs 




PHOTOGRAPH BY THOMAS PRIOR 

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THE SPACE 
SHUTTLE WAS 
A NOBLE 
EXPERIMENT 
THAT WENT ON 
FAR TOO LONG. 



IRST, SOME NUMBERS: When the program retires 
this summer, the fleet of five space shuttles will have 
flown 135 missions, made more than 20,000 orbits of 
the Earth, carried 363 people (some multiple times) 
and spent a total of more than 1300 days aloft. At 
peak thrust, the shuttle's engines burn 660,000 
pounds of solid fuel and 45,000 gallons of liquid 
hydrogen every minute, accelerating the massive 
craft from to 17,500 mph — and into orbit — in 8.5 
minutes. The shuttle's longest mission lasted more 
than 17 days. Its shortest was, sadly, also its best- 
known: the doomed 1-minute, 13-second flight of the 
Challenger in 1986. Between the Challenger disaster 
and the loss of Columbia in 2003, the shuttle program 
has cost the lives of 14 astronauts. 

For most Americans who, like me, believe human 
spaceflight is vital to our future, the shuttle remains a 
flying contradiction. On the one hand, it is an elegant 
and ambitious feat of engineering, able to carry large 
crews and big cargos, launch and retrieve satellites, 
and then land on a runway when it returns to Earth. 
Yet the shuttle is also an ungainly and impossibly 
delicate piece of hardware. (One launch was delayed 
because of damage from woodpeckers.) Conceived as 



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WorldMags 



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As the space 
shuttle retires 
this summer, 
editor-in-chief 
Jim Meigs 
traces its bold 
accomplishments— 
and failures. 




a practical, affordable workhorse, it 
turned out to be unreliable and, with 
total costs of well over $1 billion per 
launch, wickedly expensive. And, of 
course, dangerous, with an overall 
failure rate of one per 67 missions. 

As NASA prepares for the shuttle's 
expected final mission, to launch this 
month, we need to ask: Can we do 
better next time? The fact that NASA 
is ending the shuttle program before 
fully developing the next generation 
of space vehicle represents an egre- 
gious failure in planning. But it also 
presents an opportunity. What can we 
learn from the shuttle that will help 
the United States develop more agile 
and affordable space transportation? 

The shuttle began as a daring and 
innovative concept. Although the Air 
Force had experimented with planes 
that could exit and re-enter the atmos- 
phere, NASA, like the Soviet space 
agency, focused on rockets. Astronauts 
sat in capsules high atop multistage 
launch vehicles (like "Spam in a can," 
as Chuck Yeager and other aviators of 
the time sneered). All components 
except the capsules were expendable, 
that is, destroyed during flight. And 
the capsules' re-entry was ballistic — 
they fell, rather than flew, back to 
Earth. By the 1970s, when the shuttle 
was being built, expendable rockets 
routinely launched satellites and had 
carried men to the moon. Still, NASA 
hoped a reusable spacecraft could 
lower costs dramatically, making 
space travel almost routine. The 



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OPINION /// 
THE SHUTTLE'S LEGACY 



agency envisioned launches occurring 
roughly once a week. 

But alarms were raised early on. 
Space policy writer Gregg Easterbrook 
labeled the shuttle a "death trap" in 
1981, before it ever flew, and argued 
that the program should be shut 
down. Then the 1986 explosion of the 
Challenger put the program into 
permanent go-slow status. By the early 
1990s, it was clear that the shuttle 
would never become the practical 
workhorse of NASA's dreams. 

So why didn't they just retire it? 
Perversely, the high cost of the pro- 
gram was one key to its long survival. 
Some 15,000 contractual employees 
and 2000 civil servants were needed to 
keep the shuttle running. Many of 
those contractors and 



j» 



Space Station and keeping the Hubble 
telescope in service. And even the 
shuttle's failures delivered valuable 
lessons, from the damage debris could 
cause to heat shields to the need for 
an effective escape system. Collins, 
who flew four missions (including the 
first after the loss of Columbia), says, 
"We learned so much about what to 
design in or out next time. 

Right now, NASA seems to be pur- 
suing a smart strategy: turning partly 
to private industry to build and launch 
new generations of spacecraft. In the 
early days of airmail, the U.S. Post 
Office flew using its own planes and 
pilots. But a 1925 law mandated that 
the Post Office simply set a rate it 
would pay private companies to carry 
the mail. Aviators like Charles Lind- 
bergh and entrepreneurs like William 
Boeing seized the challenge, launch- 
ing an era of aviation breakthroughs. 



workers were strategically 
distributed across a belt 
of politically potent states 
from Florida to Califor- 
nia. And those states' 
congressional leaders — 



NASA'S INABILITY TO ADMIT THE SHUTTLE'S 

FAILURES REVEALED A WORRISOME 

BUREAUCRATIC INERTIA. IF THE U.S. IS TO 

BE A SPACE-FARING NATION, OUR SPACE 

AGENCY NEEDS TO BE FAR MORE NIMBLE. 



such as Texas senator Kay 
Bailey Hutchison — were 
dependable defenders of the shuttle. 
Ironically, a leaner, more affordable 
space vehicle probably would have gar- 
nered less support in Congress. 

In the end, the shuttle's legacy 
encompasses both the best and the 
worst of NASA. The agency was coura- 
geous to launch the project. But later, 
NASA's inability to admit the shuttle's 
failures revealed a worrisome 
tendency toward bureaucratic inertia. 
If the United States is to be a space- 
faring nation, our space agency needs 
to be far more nimble. 

On the route to innovation, entre- 
preneurs know that even good ideas 
usually have to be tweaked, modified 
and sometimes abandoned. "When 
something is attempted for the first 
time, there will be failures," shuttle 
commander Col. Eileen Collins 
recently told PM. "That is part of the 
flight test process." The program had 
many successes — large crews executed 
complex missions, including facilitat- 
ing the building of the International 




Instead of specifying particular 
spacecraft designs, NASA needs to 
define its missions, then take bids 
from private contractors that can 
innovate quickly — and retire unsuc- 
cessful experiments just as fast. Today, 
private companies routinely launch 
satellites at competitive prices, while 
innovative outfits such as XCOR 
Aerospace, SpaceX, Orbital Sciences 
and Armadillo Aerospace are building 
new launch vehicles. And businesses 
are already competing to carry paying 
passengers into space. In the future, 
NASA may be just one client among 
many hiring their services. 

As the shuttle prepares for its final 
flight, let's remember to salute the 
innovation of its design and the 
dedication of the astronauts who flew 
it. The shuttle was a bold experiment. 
But it kept flying far too long. We can 
do better next time . pm 



Additional reporting by Alyson 
Sheppard. 



$ WorldMags 



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Technicians inspect 
the target chamber at 
the National Ignition 
Facility in Livermore, 

Calif. During a fusion 

reaction, lasers will 
heat a pea-size cap- 
sule of hydrogen fuel 
to more than 100 
million degrees 
Celsius, fusing the 
atoms' nuclei and 
releasing energy. 









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CHEAP.UNLIMITED ENERGY HAS BEEN JUST AROUND THE 

CORNER FOR DECADES. NOW, FUSION PROGRAMS RANG- 

BILLION-DOLLAR GOVERNMENT FACILITIES TO 

SCRAPPY STARTUPS HAVE TAKEN THE FIRST TENTATIVE 
STEPS TOWARD GENERATING STAR POWER. 









FOR 




■ 



REAL? 



FROM THE OTHER SIDE OF A WIDE GLASS 

window on the third story of the National Ignition Facility 
(NIF), the world's largest laser array looks an awful lot like 
the world's largest plumbing project. Row after row of 
16-inch-diameter pipes are packed into a room like ciga- 
rettes in a box — only the box is the size of three football 
fields. A catwalk thick with miles of cable runs through 
the center. Large metal ducts snake overhead and along 
the walls. I have to take it on faith that the pipes, called 



beam tubes, don't contain water or gas, 
but 192 separate laser beams zipping back 
and forth. When the beams finally exit the 
room, their strength amplified more than 
a quadrillion times, they will converge on 
a pencil-eraser-size target in one short, 
powerful pulse. And in those 20-billionths 
of a second, I'm told, atoms of hydrogen 
will smash together with such force that 
they'll essentially create a star. 

It sounds impressive — and certainly 
looks imposing — but society has been 
taking promises of fusion on faith for 
more than five decades. If fusion works as 
proponents claim, it could produce 
enough clean energy to power the world 
for hundreds and hundreds of years to 
come. One of the first hurdles is the tini- 
est component, the fuel: Hydrogen iso- 
topes, such as deuterium and tritium, 
adamantly resist uniting, regardless of 
the amount of heat and steel and funding 
thrown into the effort. 

But this past fall, physicists at NIF, 
based at Lawrence Livermore National 
Laboratory in California, made an impor- 
tant advance with their elaborate building 



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and enormous laser: They fired 121 
kilojoules of ultraviolet light into the 
$3.5 billion facility's target chamber, 
causing deuterium and tritium nuclei 
to fuse into helium atoms, releasing 
300 trillion high-energy neutrons. 
Even though NIF and other labs have 
created fusion before, the achieve- 
ment brings researchers a step closer 
to conquering the ultimate challenge: 
a fusion reaction that produces more 
energy than is required to start it. 

Expensive megaprograms such as 
NIF aren't the only ventures making 
progress. At the other end of the fund- 
ing spectrum, a number of innovative 
startups have also begun to yield 
promising results. After decades of 
frustratingly slow research, the emer- 
gence of real, practical fusion power 
may come down to a race between 
these entrepreneurial Davids and the 
government-run Goliaths. 



"SEE THOSE TWO 
WATER JOGS RIGHT 

THERE?" THE DIRECTOR 
OF NIF SAYS. "THOSE 





ENERGY EQUIVALENT OF 

A SUPERTANKER 

OF OIL." 




$ WorldMags 



Given the recent partial meltdown of reactors in Japan, finding public support 
for any form of nuclear energy might seem unlikely. Still, fusion has some impor- 
tant safety advantages over nuclear fission: To produce energy from fission, atoms 
such as uranium-235 are split into radioactive elements, some of which have 
extremely long half-lives. Nuclear fusion produces helium and neutrons, and no 
super-long-lived radioactive waste. Plus, fusion cannot cause runaway reactions 
because it requires a steady input of energy for the isotopes to fuse; any plant mal- 
function would cause near-immediate shutdown. Over the long term, fusion 
power might reduce pressure on fossil fuels such as oil and coal, while comple- 
menting clean but intermittent energy sources such as wind and solar. 

To produce electricity, the heat generated during a fusion reaction could be 
harnessed to drive a steam turbine, just as in any power plant. The difference is 
that fusion doesn't rely on the trainloads of coal, shipments of uranium, oil and 
gas drilling rigs or elaborate pipelines that feed today's facilities. Deuterium is 
found in seawater. "See those two water jugs right there?" says Edward Moses, 
the director of NIF, pointing to a display in the facility's atrium. "Those would 
have the energy equivalent of a supertanker of oil." 





AT THE MODEST HEADQUARTERS OF HELION ENERGY IN RED- 

mond, Wash., the off-Broadway equivalent of the colossal NIF production is 
beginning to play out. The company is tucked away at the back of a nondescript 
suburban office park in a space not much bigger than a dentist's office; if you 
weren't specifically looking for Helion, you'd never come across it. A reception 
desk near the entrance has been repurposed into a work- 
bench strewn with electronic components. Colored cables 
dangle overhead in free-form clusters, and workstations 
are propped up with cinder blocks. At one point, the 
researchers talk about a 10-tesla coil they're working on to 
amp up the strength of their reactor's magnetic field. "We 
built that coil," scientist George Votroubek says. "Have you 
showed her yet?" 

"No," his colleague Chris Pihl replies casually, "it's on 
the front counter." 

Helion is among a handful of fusion startups, such as 
Tri Alpha Energy in Foothill Ranch, Calif., and General 
Fusion in Vancouver, British Columbia, all striving for the 
same grand goal as their outsize government counterparts: 
remaking the global energy landscape by proving that 
fusion power is feasible. A few forward-looking venture- 
capital firms have provided funding to get them off the 
ground; Tri Alpha, for instance, has attracted more than 
$50 million from a variety of prominent firms, including 
Goldman Sachs and Vulcan Capital. 

Helion's technology was developed for about $5 mil- 
lion by MSNW, a company owned by University of Wash- 
ington research associate professor John Slough. To see a 
full-scale component of the reactor, which Slough calls a 
fusion engine, I meet him at an industrial building a few 
minutes' drive from Helion's headquarters and walk past 
a conference table to a room filled with giant metal parts. 

Inside the 26-foot-long prototype, two plasmas — clouds 
of hot ionized gas containing hydrogen isotopes — hurtle 
toward each other. The clouds collide inside a burn cham- 
ber, merging into a single entity. An electromagnet sur- 
rounding the chamber squeezes the plasma tighter and 
tighter, creating the high temperature and pressure con- 
ditions needed for fusion — a milestone MSNW first 
passed in 2008. "The idea," says Slough, who has the white 



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WorldMag! 



FUSION FROM 
THE WORLD'S 
BIGGEST LASER 




At the National Ignition Facility (NIF), 
"inertial confinement fusion" begins 
with a very small, weak laser pulse. This 
pulse is split into 48 beams and sent to 
preamplifiers, which increase the 
energy to a few joules. The laser is split 
further into 192 beams and injected 
into beamlines that enter two massive 
bays. The beams then pass through two 
systems of glass amplifiers, which 
increase their power to 20,000 joules. 
After leaving the main laser building, 
the parallel beams are rearranged into a 
spherical configuration by mirrors in 
10-story-tall "switchyards." A final 
optics assembly converts the lasers' 
wavelength from infrared to ultraviolet, 
and a lens focuses them on a precise 
target in the center of a chamber. 




NIF's target chamber (above) contains the fuel for fusion: a 
dime-size gold cylinder, called a hohlraum, encasing a beryllium- 
coated capsule with deuterium and tritium atoms. When lasers 
strike the hohlraum, their energy is converted to X-rays that burn 
away the capsule, compressing the fuel and forcing it to implode. 



A system of amplifiers (shown in the laser bay, below) provides 
99.99 percent of NIF's power. Vertical arrays of flash lamps 
excite neodymium atoms embedded in slabs of phosphate glass 
As lasers pulse through the glass, they pick up that energy. 







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WorldMags 



ways. "If you're going to build a suc- 
cessful fusion system, it's going to be 
inherently small," Hirsch says. With a 
scaled-back approach, "there is a good 
chance they could make something 
that works." 

The team announces that they're 
about to show me exactly what 
Helion-style fusion looks like. "You 
might want hearing protection for 
this," the company's president, 
Philip Wallace, says, handing me a 
pair of industrial-strength earmuffs. 
His colleagues power up the device. 
After the countdown clock on some- 
one's iPhone drains to zero, there's a 
burst that sounds like a bulb break- 
ing and a flash of pink light so bright 
that I have to turn away for a second. 
Wallace turns to me triumphantly: 
"You just witnessed fusion." 



hair and slightly disheveled appear- 
ance of a modern-day Einstein, "is to 
have the energy that comes out of the 
plasma exceed the energy that goes 
into it for a brief period of time." 

Management Information Services 
senior energy adviser Robert Hirsch, a 
former director at the U.S. Atomic 
Energy Commission, argues that 
startup companies may have some 
surprising advantages. Forced by 
funding constraints to design systems 
that are as simple as possible, startups 
are likely to end up with clean, lean 
reactors instead of complex, mono- 
lithic ones, like NIF's, which have the 
potential to fail in dozens of different 



THE IDEA OF GENERATING 

power from fusion has captured sci- 
entists' imaginations ever since U.S. 
physicist Edward Teller developed 
the first fusion-based hydrogen 
bomb, which released hundreds of 
times more energy than a fission 
bomb, in 1952. (Hot-fusion-powered 
approaches to creating energy are 
completely different from discredit- 
ed "cold fusion" experiments, in 
which a current is passed through an 
electrode in heavy water in an 
attempt to coax nuclei to combine.) 
But in early tests of fusion, plasma 
leaked out of the confinement zone 
inside reactors faster than scientists 
had predicted, scuttling fusion reac- 
tions before they could occur. 
Fusion's prospects seemed to improve in the 1960s, 
when scientists in the Soviet Union tested a new type of 
fusion reactor called the tokamak. It featured a doughnut- 
shaped, electrically generated magnetic field that kept the 
plasma confined. Most international fusion research to 
date has followed the tokamak model; experimental toka- 
mak reactors such as the United Kingdom's Joint European 
Torus (JET) and Japan's JT-60 have helped scientists under- 
stand how to confine and handle fusion plasmas. Leverag- 
ing this knowledge, 34 nations are collaborating to build 
the world's largest tokamak, called ITER, a demonstration 
project tentatively slated to start operation in France in 2019. 

NIF scientists have taken a completely different approach. Instead of under- 
taking the delicate task of confining plasma inside a magnetic field, they aim to 
produce a controlled version of the fusion that takes place inside the sun or a 
hydrogen bomb, using lasers as the reaction's driver — a technique called inertial 
I confinement fusion. NIF's Moses notes that many of the building blocks of the 




Helion Energy co- 
founder John Slough 
in the Redmond, 
Wash., skunkworks. 
Slough says his 
reactor's simplicity 
and low cost give 
him a huge advan- 
tage in the fusion 
power race. "No 
one's gonna give 
you 10 or 20 billion 
dollars to experi- 
ment," he says. 




$ WorldMags 



PHOTOGRAPH BY JOHN KEATLEY 





WorldMags 



A SAFER FUTURE FOR FISSION 



A fusion economy, if it ever materializes, is at least a couple 
of decades away. In the wake of the recent disaster in Japan, 
the world needs near- term technologies capable of improv- 
ing the safety of nuclear fission. Here are a few of the most 
promising possibilities, which could turn into important 
power sources in their own right. 




REACTORS 



FISSION 
BATTERIES 




Oregon-based 
NuScale Power's 
proposed 45-mega 
watt mini-reactors 
are the Lego bricks 
of the nuclear 
power world— self- 
contained reactor/ 



containment 
structures that can 
be stacked together 
or separated as 
regional needs 
dictate. "You install 
a module as the 
power demand 



increases— it's a 

plug-and-playsort 
of mo del," says 
Jose Reyes, chief 
technology officer 
at NuScale. 
Because the entire 
reactor assembly 



sits in a concrete 
bunker under- 
ground, these mini- 
reactors might 
prove safer for use 
in areas that have a 
history of seismic 
activity. 



Could compact nuclear plants become go-to power sources for off-grid homes and 
businesses? That's the vision of Hyperion Power Generation, based in Santa Fe, N.M. 
About the size of an outdoor hot tub, Hyperion's 25-megawatt fission batteries could 
potentially be installed just about anywhere; Hyperion plans to refuel them once every 
eight to 10 years. Because liquid metal, not pressurized water, cools Hyperion's reactors, 
radioactive material would not likely spew into the air in case of an accident, says 
Deborah Blackwell, Hyperion's vice president for public policy: "The fuel would just sit in 
the bottom of the reactor and become a big paperweight, containing the radioactivity." 



This radioactive 

metal is three to 
four times more 
common than 
uranium fuel, and 
unlike uranium, it 
doesn't generate 
weapons-usable 



nuclear material 
after it's burned in a 
reactor. Thorium 
could potentially be 
dissolved in a 
mixture of liquid 
salts and used to 
power so-called 



molten-salt fission 
reactors. These 
highly meltdown- 
resistant reactors 
aren't yet ready for 
widespread rollout, 
but some scientists 
project they will be 



able to reburn 
thorium's long-lived 
radioactive waste 
products as 
well— yielding much 
smaller waste piles 
than traditional 
ight-water reactors 



hi 

to 

to 



project's massive laser array have already been used successfully in other indus- 
trial settings: Laser diodes similar to NIF's have enabled fiberoptic data trans- 
mission in the telecommunications industry for years. "It's a good place to be 
when you're riding the wave of other people's work," he says. 

With its pulsed magnetic field design, the Helion team claims it has found 
the elusive sweet spot in the fusion landscape: a reliable, cheap reactor that 
doesn't require fine-tuned optics or complicated plasma confinement. In 
Helion' s reactor, electric currents flowing inside the plasma reverse the direc- 
tion of a magnetic field that's applied from the outside; the new, closed field 
that results effectively confines the plasma. "Compared to the tokamak and 
NIF, Helion' s reactor is relatively compact and low-cost," says Richard Milroy, a 
physicist at the University of Washington who isn't affiliated with Helion. "Utili- 
ties don't need to invest billions for the first test reactor to see if things will work 
out." Plus, he says, the plasma-formation area is separate from the burn cham- 
ber in Helion's reactor, so its expensive components may last longer. 

Still, all of these experimental fusion approaches face a host of scientific and 
practical unknowns. The massive numbers of neutrons generated during fusion 
may damage components of a tokamak over time, and the plasma inside can 
also become unstable, impeding the reaction. And even though NIF has man- 
aged to achieve partial fusion by firing individual rounds into its target cham- 
ber, similar lasers would likely need to fire 10 to 15 times every second in LIFE, 
the demonstration power plant Lawrence Livermore is designing for the early 
2020s. That kind of consistent firing would require a laser driver with a high rep- 
etition rate, which has yet to be developed and tested. 




"O 

o 



> 

m 

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O 





$ WorldMags 




WorldMags 



FUSION FROM 

PLASMAS 

COLLIDING 



The fusion reactor licensed by startup Helion Energy features a field-reversed configuration, in which a 
closed magnetic field created by electric currents inside plasma — hot ionized gas containing hydrogen 
atoms — keeps the plasma confined. The magnetic field also captures high-energy helium ions created 
during the fusion reaction, replenishing some of the energy used to start the reaction. 




ROOM-SIZE 



STAGE 1 



SURROUNDED 
DY MAGNETS 






Two plasmas are formed by ionizing gas at either end of Helion's 

one-third-scale prototype fusion engine (see photo below). 



STAGE 2 




Pulsed magnetic fields accelerate the plasmas toward each 
other at 1 million miles per hour. 




STAGE 3 



:-l- 



The plasmas collide in the burn chamber and a magnetic field 
compresses them further, raising temperatures to 25 million 
Celsius. Hydrogen nuclei in the plasma fuse, releasing energy. 




$ WorldMags 



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While Helion's reactor is much simpler than those of ITER or NIF, it's also 
not yet powerful enough to be useful to a utility. Slough says his team will need 
to increase the size of the reactor's magnetic confinement field and boost the 
acceleration rate so that the plasmas will be traveling about twice as fast by the 
time they crash into each other. Those refinements will require at least $15 mil- 
lion to $20 million in development costs, money Helion does not currently have. 
Even if the funds materialize, there's no guarantee the reactor will work as pro- 
jected when scaled up, or function consistently over long periods of time. 

Wallace has traveled all over the U.S. and Europe, trying to secure money for 
this next phase, but, so far, firms haven't seemed interested in bankrolling a 
company that may take a quarter-century to start making reliable power. 
"Nobody's said they don't believe our science, but it's a struggle," he says. "We 
believe we're a long way ahead, but we're also not close to the finishing line." 




FOCUSING ON FUSION'S FEASIBILITY SIDESTEPS A QUESTION 

that's perhaps more crucial: whether we should be pursuing fusion energy at 
all. For every optimist, there's at least one expert who believes fusion will never 
become a commercial reality. "One aspect that gets underestimated is the great 
challenge of converting the energy of fusion into useful electricity," says David 
LeBlanc, a physicist at Canada's Carleton University. Even when fusion reac- 
tions are successful, it'll be a very tall order to get past the fabled break-even 
point and create a fusion reaction that produces more energy than is needed to 
start it — and until that is achieved, pure fusion power is just a lab experiment. 

Some observers think we'd be better off scrapping fusion altogether. "These 
technologies are a luxury we cannot afford," says Thomas Cochran, a senior sci- 
entist in the nuclear program at the Natural Resources Defense Council. "It's 
hard to see how you get from here to commercialization in any cost-effective man- 
ner." Alternative energy, on the other hand, can be deployed today: Wind and 
solar have essentially come to technological fruition, and money spent installing 
turbines and arrays would immediately begin to offset carbon emissions. 

Even fusion's more ardent supporters agree that — given the technical issues 
plaguing each fusion approach and the high cost of building prototypes — it is 
still many years from reaching the point of adoption. "In the long run, it will be 
a winner. We just don't know when that time frame will be," says Stephen Dean, 
president of the nonprofit research firm Fusion Power Associates. "If we had a 
crash program, like the moon or the atom bomb project, we could do it in 15 to 
20 years, but that's the most optimistic thing I can think of." 

Other researchers say fusion might be most useful — at least in the near 
term — as a means of destroying waste from nuclear fission. University of Texas 
physicist Swadesh Mahajan and his colleagues are developing a hybrid fusion- 
fission reactor that shunts neutrons produced during fusion to a fission blanket 
that burns nuclear waste as fuel. "Producing energy by fusion is at best a very 
long-term project," Mahajan says, "but through this intermediary, we can 
become useful to the energy sector." 

NIF's projected LIFE power plant will be designed to burn waste, too, and 
Helion is considering adapting its reactor to do the same in order to provide rev- 
enue from utilities sooner. It's easier from a technical standpoint than using 
fusion to produce energy, because achieving break-even is not necessary — and it 
could potentially help solve a long-standing problem. Using Sandia National 
Laboratories data, Helion calculates 50 fusion engines could incinerate the 
entire U.S. stockpile of nuclear waste in 20 years. 

Regardless of the detours fusion may take, its backers remain determined to 
see their initial energy quest through to its completion. Both Moses and Wal- 
lace insist that fusion power is a key component of a sustainable global future. 
"When you have a chance to do something that's meaningful, you might as well 
go for it," Wallace says. "It's not just making another widget." If they pull it off, 
it will be more like engineering the seemingly unattainable: the ultimate solar 
energy, a plant that manufactures the power of the sun. pm 



$ WorldMags 



ILLUSTRATIONS 



D0G0 





THE NEW 

ENERGY 
CRISIS 



10 FIXES 



BY ALEX HUTCHINSON 

ADDITIONAL REPORTING 
BY SARAH FECHT 



Sure, fusion and 
other exotic energy 
technologies will 
change the world- 
if and when they 

arrive. But what 
do we do in the 
meantime? The U.S. 
can 't wait decades 
to begin resolving 
the issues we face 
right now. The road 
to clean, reliable, 
affordable energy 
must start with 
more efficient use of 
today's fossil fuels, 
even as we lay the 
groundwork for 
future sources. Here 
are 10 common- 
sense ideas that 
can be implemented 
immediately, in the 
midterm and in the 
long term. 




Ill 




Immediate 




WorldMags 




Cut Diesel 
Taxes 





Diesel engines are 
about 30 percent 
more efficient 
than comparable 
gasoline engines. 
The EPA estimates 
that if one-third of 
Americans drove 
diesel vehicles, we'd 
save 1.4 million 

barrels of oil a day. 
So why aren't diesel 
engines creating 
the same buzz as 
hybrids? "People 
think diesel is very 
dirty because of 
the old days," says 



Lucian Puglia- 
resi of the Energy 
Policy Research 
Foundation. In fact, 
the transition to 
ultralow sulfur die- 
sel, completed last 
December, means 

that diesel fuel now 
has at least 97 
percent less sulfur. 
But federal excise 
taxes are higher 

on diesel than on 
gasoline (see chart 
at right), hampering 
its adoption. State 
taxes are lower on 



average, but that 
could change. For 
example, this year 
the Arkansas House 
of Representatives 
approved a bond 
measure asking 
voters in 2012 to 
pass a nickel-a- 
gallon tax increase 
on diesel. The public 
should realize that 
raising these fees 
would undercut a 
technology that 
squeezes more 
energy out of each 
barrel of oil. 




Reality Check 




I IHI 





TOP FIVE 

SOURCES 

OF FOREIGN 

CRUDE OIL* 



America is not as dependent on Middle Eastern oil as most people think. The U.S. uses about 
20 million barrels of petroleum per day. Domestic production satisfies 49 percent of that demand; 
the balance comes from about 90 other countries. Nearly half of those 11.7 million daily imports 
(43 percent) come from Canada, Mexico and Venezuela. Oil-producing nations in the Persian Gulf 

account for just 17 percent. 




2. Stop Flaring and Venting Natural Gas 



.- ' 





Each year, more than 300 billion cubic feet of natural gas— about 
6 percent of the amount used in American homes— escapes or 
is flared off during the production, processing and storage of 
oil and gas. In the past, it wasn't economical to capture these 
"fugitive emissions." Better technology has changed that. Hy-Bon 
Engineering, for example, makes compressors that can handle the 
low-pressure gas escaping from crude oil storage tanks. That gas 
packs 2.5 times more heating power than typical pipeline natura 
gas, making it so valuable that the total cost of installing the 
equipment is usually paid off in six months. This one's a no-brainer. 





mini 

mini 
mini 






Immediate 




$ WorldMags 




WorldMags 




^ 



Simplify 
Interconnection 
and Net Metering 





One of the biggest 
barriers holding 

back those who 
want to make their 
own power is red 
tape. In many states, 
getting permission 
to plug into the grid 
(interconnection) 
and getting credit 
for power you feed 
into it (net meter- 
ing) are expensive 
hassles. You should 
be able to use the 
grid like a bank, 
says James Rose, a 
policy analyst with 
the Network for 
New Energy Choices: 
Deposit power when 
you have an excess, 
and withdraw it as 
needed. Smaller gen- 
erators (less than 10 
megawatts) located 
close to where the 
power is used can 
take load off the 
electric grid, saving 

transmission losses. 
Easier grid access 
is a subsidy-free 
way to encourage 
all types of power 
equally, from solar 
panels to natural 
gas-powered 
cogeneration units. 



the Glut© 
of Oil at 
Supply 

Hubs 





af 



# 






KEYSTONE PIPELINE 



CL1SHING, OKLA. 
(STORAGE) 



Oil from Canada is piped into storage tanks in 
the Midwest before traveling to U.S. refineries. 
The problem is that there are more pipelines 
going in than going out," says Marshall Adkins, 
an energy analyst with Raymond James 
Financial. To ease a record-breaking glut, 
TransCanada Corp. wants to build a pipe con- 
necting Alberta to Cushing, Okla., and on to the 
Gulf Coast. This project, proposed in 2008, has 
been delayed by the U.S. State Department, 
despite approval by the Canadian government 
and a positive U.S. environmental impact 
report. The feds should not dither: Without the 
new pipeline, at least 1 million barrels a day of 
Canadian oil could be sold to Asia, increasing 

U.S. reliance on Middle East imports. 



ENBRIDGE 

ANDBP 

PIPELINES 



i 










PATOKA, ILL. 
(STORAGE) 



PEGASUS 
PIPELINE 



REFINERIES 




PROPOSED 

KEYSTONE 
XL PIPELINE, 

STALLED AT 

U.S. STATE 

DEPARTMENT 












5. Promote Demand- 



m 



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Response Tech 






uu 



uu- 












■ 








Within an electric 
grid, timing is every- 
thing. "Its not how 
much power you use, 
it's when you use it/ 
says Mary Ann Piette, 
who directs the 
Demand Response 
Research Center at 
Lawrence Berkeley 
National Labora- 
tory. The biggest 
benefits of adjusting 
demand come with 
automation. Piette 
and her colleagues 



have spent nine years 
developing standards 
for how utilities 
communicate with 

buildings' controls. 
Each state must 
adopt standards 
individually, but 
researchers this year 
are agreeing on grid 
specifications that 
all states can share, 
easing widespread 
adoption. Piette 
says, "With minimal 

retrofit to controls, 



today's buildings can 
provide a significant 
reduction to their 
peak electric loads." 
Shifting load by just 
a few minutes can 
make a crucial differ- 
ence—for example, 
temporarily dimming 

warehouse lights by 
10 percent Such 
technology can lower 
prices and reduce 
the need for new 
transmission lines 
and power plants. 



o 



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o 





On 



WorldMags 



III 



Midterm 



III! 



nnnnnnnnn 






III! 



Illl 



Ill 



III 

Hi 

111 



mini 
mini 
mini 



Reality Check 



OF RECOVERABLE NATURAL GAS 
IN THE CONTIGUOUS U.S. 



6. Don't Touch 
the Emergency 
Oil Reserve 



ANTRIM 
20 tcf * 




"me U.S. stores 727 million 
barrels of crude oil in under- 
ground salt caverns in Texas 
and Louisiana, a reserve meant 
to be drawn down during a 
crisis. Over the years, however, 
whenever high gas prices have 
hit, politicians of all stripes 
have clamored for the presi- 
dent to open the spigot on this 
Strategic Petroleum Reserve. 
But releasing 4.4 million barrels 
of oil a day from the SPR— the 
maximum possible— would not 
reverse long-term trends that 
affect prices. And drawing down 
the reserve would leave the 
nation with one less option in 
case of extended interruptions 

in supply. That's why the SPR 
was created— not as a hedge 
against transient price spikes. 







Combine 
Heat and 
Power 

Systems 





m 



NATURAL GAS 
100% 

WASTE HEAT 
5% TO 15% 
ELECTRICITY 
10% TO 25% 
HOME HEAT 
70% TO 80% 



MARCELLUS 
262 tcf 



' 



FAYETTEVILLE 
42 tcf 



HAYNESVILLE 
251 tcf 



BARNETT 
44 tcf 



• TRILLION CUBIC FEET 









The United States has abundant sources of clean energy, ready to be tapped. 

A staggering 2552 trillion cubic feet (tcf) of natural gas exists in United States 
territory— and a single tcf can heat 15 million homes for one year or generate 100 
billion kilowatt-hours of electricity. One important bonus: When burned, natural 
gas releases less carbon dioxide than oil and coal. Of the total potential natural gas 
in the U.S., 827 tcf come from shale. To tap these formations, called plays, drillers 
pump liquids and sand into wells, cracking the host rock, which releases hydrocar- 
bons. Critics say this technique, hydraulic fracturing, contaminates groundwater 
with gas flowing up poorly sealed wellbores or with wastewater stored in holding 
ponds at the surface. The solution is not to ban fracking, but to improve the way 
it's done. Drillers need to upgrade operations— for example, by adopting nontoxic 
fluids to break rock and by recycling drilling fluid. 







Natural gas power plants are 
more efficient than coal-burn 

ing ones, but they still waste 
about half of the energy stored 
in the gas, emitting it as heat. 
Combined Heat and Power 
(CHP) systems use that excess 
heat to warm buildings, push- 
ing overall efficiency above 
90 percent. "You can also 
reduce grid losses and improve 
reliability," says Joel Swisher, 



a Rocky Mountain Institute 
researcher. Large buildings 
are ideal for CHP systems, but 
units for homes are emerg- 
ing: Honda's Freewatt, based 
on tech that won a 2006 PM 
Breakthrough Award, this year 

got rave reviews during an 
EPA field test. The DOE wants 
to boost CHP from 8 to 20 
percent of power generation 
by 2030; let's do it faster. 



A GENERATOR PRODUCES ELECTRICITY; ITS EXCESS HEAT 
IS TRANSFERRED TO A BOILER. WITH NET METERING, ANY 
EXTRA POWER CAN BE RESOLD TO THE UTILITY COMPANY. 



^ WorldMag 




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WorldMags 








| 

I 

■ 

I 






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MM 

I 



9. Build a Superconducting 
Transmission Grid 



■ 



Subsidies 



m 



\ 



Politicians cite many 
reasons to subsidize 
American energy produc- 
ers, includingjob creation, 
price moderation and new 
technology development. 
But they have to do a bet- 
ter job of killing handouts 
that do more harm than 
good. Of the $72 billion in 
subsidies that fossil-fuel 
producers received from 
2002 to 2008, the larg- 
est ($15.3 billion) single 
source was a loophole in 
the Foreign Tax Credit that 
allows oil companies to 
deduct lease payments for 
drilling in places like Saudi 
Arabia and the United 
Arab Emirates from their 

U.S. tax bills. Over the 
same period, renewable 
fuel received $29 billion 
in subsidies— but more 
than half of that went to 
corn-based ethanol, which 
offers dubious net energy 
benefits, increases farm 
pollution and drives up 
food prices. Creating an 
industry from a politically 
expedient but unproven 

technology is not a good 
use of federal money; it is 
better to level the playing 
field and let the market 
choose the most success- 
ful technologies. 



49*£ 






*1--J 






$72 

billion 



Eight years after the huge Northeast blackout, 

we're still talking about urgently needed improve- 
ments to the electric grid. Meanwhile, transmis- 
sion losses squander about 7 percent of the elec- 
tricity we generate, and trafficjams on the grid 
waste billions of dollars a year. Superconducting 
wire, which can conduct 100 times more current 
across supercooled lines than comparable copper 
wire, is the obvious next-generation solution. It 
takes seven to 15 years to build a new transmis- 
sion line in the United States, mostly due to oppo- 
sition from local residents to new infrastructure. 
But conventional lines require 200-foot right-of- 
ways, while a single superconducting line, capable 
of carrying the output of 10 nuclear plants, can 
be buried in just a 3-foot right-of-way. Fixing the 
grid is unavoidable; let's do it with 21st-century 
tech, not 20th-century patches. 





DC SUPER 

CONDUCTS 
POWER 
CABLE 



LIQUID 
NITROGEN 



CABLE INSULATION 



1 0. Fund Game- 
Changing Research 



billion 



^imn* 



We get one -fifth of 
our electricity from 
nuclear power plants. 
They didn't emerge 
from nowhere— in 

fact, since 1948 
the government has 
provided $91.1 billion 
(in 2010 dollars) 
for nuclear energy 
research. Despite 
the recent events in 
Japan, nuclear power 
will undoubtedly 
remain a critical part 
of our energy mix 

for the foreseeable 
future— but we need 



iJlllll 



, 



LIQUID 
NITROGEN 
RETURN FLOW 



to keep funding other 
potentially transfor- 
mative research 
into safe, abundant 
energy. It's too early 
to know what will ulti- 
mately replace fossil 
fuels. Rather than 
subsidizing industries, 
U.S. tax dollars are 
better spent on pure 
research that the 
private sector can't 
afford to do. By mak- 
ing these investments, 
the U.S. could pos- 
sibly prevent a future 
energy crisis, pm 



• 



'! 



IV' 



:?;£ 



Long-term 




$ WorldMags 






WorldMags 







FIAT 500 



FORD FOCUS SFE 









FIAT'S NEW-FOR- 

America 500 was an 
outlier in this test: a 
three-door hatch up against 

comparatively roomy 
four-doors; sport-themed up 
against plain wrappers; and 
with a mere five manually 

shifted gears matched to 
six-speeders. Beyond that, it 
had the lowest EPA ratings: 
30/38. What the 500 has is 
personality. Its retro body, 
bolt upright cabin, dinky 
wheelbase, narrow width and 
195/45R16 tires on 
aluminum wheels make it 
look like a Sardinian 
skateboard. It's a high-style 
microcar that competes with 
the Mini Cooper and, maybe, 
a high-end Vespa. There's a 
toy-like countenance to the 



500 that makes it quite 
effective at slicing through 
traffic and attacking off 
ramps. The 101-hp engine 
uses Fiat's MultiAir variable 
valve-lift system to increase 
efficiency, but the motor 
works hard, so the 500 is not 
the fuel-economy champ in 
this group. There's no surplus 
of oomph— but enough to 
make the 500 drive as 
spunky as it looks. 




STATS 




With the 500's 
cute face and 



the fact that it's 

a fuel-efficient 

and reasonably 

priced car. 



PRICE 

(BASE/AS TESTED): 
$18,000/$18,150 
POWERTRAIN: 101 hp/ 
98 lb-ft 1.4-liter 14, 5M 
WHEELBASE (in.): 90.6 
LENGTH (in.): 139.6 
ACCELERATION (sec): 
0-60 mph: 10.18 
40-70 mph: 8.82 
QUARTER-MILE (sec/ 
mph): 17.26 @ 77.54 
BRAKING, 60-0 mph 
(ft): 125.6 

SLALOM (mph): 70.1 
LANE CHANGE (mph): 
54.6 
SKIDPAD (g's): 0.85 




WITH ITS SCULPTED 

flanks and radical 
windshield slope, the Focus 
looks like a 21st-century 
small car. The SFE model is 
tricked out for fuel economy. 
The 2.0-liter engine features 
direct fuel injection— good 
for a 10 percent efficiency 
gain, Ford says— and is 
coupled to an automated 
twin-clutch six-speed 
gearbox that drives 
low-rolling-resistance tires. 
Opening the Focus's thick, 
triple-sealed doors is like 
peeling back a Tupperware 
lid. But despite that 
sensation of solidity, the 
Focus was the most 
consistently economical car 

on PM's road trip. Its 
38.6-mpg performance was 
second only to the diesel 
Jetta's, which is very 
satisfying for a car that is 
accommodating, quiet and 
the quickest sprinter to 60 
mph. Throw in neat Ford 
stuff like Sync, LED interior 
lighting, Millennium Falcon 
instrumentation and a 
$20,780 as-tested price, 

and the Focus becomes 
impossible to ignore. 



PM 
TESTED 



STATS 






Hft*» 



PRICE 

(BASE/AS TESTED): 
$18,490/$20,780 

POWERTRAIN: 160 hp/ 
146 lb-ft 2.0-liter 14, 
6 auto-manual 

WHEELBASE (in.): 104.3 
LENGTH (in.): 178.5 
ACCELERATION (sec): 
0-60 mph: 8.02 
40-70 mph: 5.97 
QUARTER-MILE (sec/ 
mph): 15.82 @ 87.60 
BRAKING, 60-0 mph 
(ft): 119.6 

SLALOM (mph): 69.1 
LANE CHANGE (mph): 
48.3 
SKIDPAD (g's): 0.82 







Developed in 
Europe, the new 
Focus delivers 
snappy accelera- 
tion, s 
dynamics. 
fuel economy. 




76 JUNE 2011 



POPULARMECHANICS.COM 



> WorldMags 



WorldMags 






Batteries Not Included 



It seems like hybrids and 
electric vehicles have been 

hogging the efficiency 
spottightiately. But while 
trend watchers have been 
focused on exotic technol- 
ogies, carmakers have been 
quietly boosting the perfor- 
mance of the gooa old 
internal combustion engine. 
Here are five high-mileage 
cars that offer fun and 
refinement— and cost far 
less than most hybrids. 



PHOTOGRAPHS BY MARK PETERSON 



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Just a few years ago, the only 

cars wearing a 40-mpg EPA 

sticker carried an expensive 

u electric-hybrid system. But 

automakers are responding 

to higher fuel prices— and 

tougher CAFE (Corporate 

Average Fuel Economy) 

gulations— by engineering 

improved fuel efficiency into 

nonhybrid vehicles, like the 

five we've tested here. 



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WorldMags 



CHEVROLET CRUZE ECO 




ANY OF US DON'T VOTE 

regularly, rarely petition 
the government, have no 
need of speechmaking and 
can't make it to our houses 
of worship every week. But 
millions of us drive and go 
where we want, when we want— it's one way we 
Americans express our freedom. Today's 
challenge, with gas prices rising, is to stay on 
the road while burning less fuel. And the best 
way to do that isn't necessarily with a hybrid. 

The number of nonhybrid vehicles carrying 
EPA highway mileage ratings near 40 mpg is 
rapidly expanding. A year ago, the only 
gasoline-fueled vehicle rated higher than that 
was the teetering Smart Fortwo, which carries 
two people in a cramped and noisy cabin. 
Today, the all-new Chevrolet Cruze Eco, Ford 
Focus SFE and Hyundai Elantra all hit 40 or 
better while comfortably seating up to five. And 
Fiat has returned with its stylishly reinvented 
500 close behind them at 38 mpg. So, skipping 
the impractical Smart, PM recruited examples 
of the newer four for this comparison. 

The diesels are back too. The latest is VW's 
2011 Jetta TDI, with a new, larger body 

optimized for America. So we invited one. 

That's five cars and not a single heavy, 
expensive battery pack among them. All five use 
strategies both venerable and modern to stretch 
their mileage. Gearboxes with long overdrives 
aren't new, but computer-automated, dual- 
clutch six-speed manual transmissions are. 
Low-rolling-resistance tires are an old trick, but 
now they're paired with aerodynamic body 
elements that automatically open and close 
with air speed. And direct injection, turbocharg- 
ers and variable valve timing are all exploited 
in new, innovative ways. 

Hybrids are optimized for stop-and-go 
driving where their battery assists and 
regenerative braking pay dividends. They make 

great taxis. But these five cars love the open 
road. So the essential element of PM's test was 
a meandering trip through California's 
midsection, from Santa Barbara to San 
Francisco. Along the way, we plied city streets, 
highways and two-laners to get a real-world 

assessment of how much fuel these cars drink. 
There's still plenty of adventure left on 
America's roads. And these cars grab it while 
delivering somewhere near 40 mpg. 





EPA 
CITY 



EPA 
HWY 



PM 
TESTED 




FORGET CHEVROLET'S 

star-crossed small cars 
of the past. The new 2011 
Cruze Eco flat works. Like the 
Focus, the Cruze Eco features 
aerodynamic slats behind the 
grille that automatically open 
at low speeds to keep the 
engine cool, but then close 
when cruising to reduce drag. 

And, of course, it has low- 
rolling-resistance tires. The 






STATS 



■ 



PRICE 

(BASE/AS TESTED): 

$18,895/$19,745 

POWERTRAIN: 138 hp/ 

148 Ib-ft 1.4-liter 

turbo 14, 6M 

WHEELBASE (in.): 105.7 

LENGTH (in.): 181.0 

ACCELERATION (sec): 

0-60 mph: 8.55 

40-70 mph: 6.96 

QUARTER-MILE (sec/ 

mph): 16.31 @ 84.46 

BRAKING, 60-0 mph 

(ft): 129.1 

SLALOM (mph): 72.5 

LANE CHANGE (mph): 

50.6 

SKIDPAD (g's): 0.80 



star here is a 138-hp, 1.4-liter 
turbo motor that performs 
like a much larger engine. To 
enable the Cruze's 42-mpg 
highway rating, the Eco's 
engine is lashed to a 
six-speed manual transmis- 
sion, with overdrive ratios for 
the top three gears. At a 
steady 70 mph, the tiny 

engine is only turning about 
2000 rpm, but even the 
slightest grade can mean 
downshifting to third. The 
Cruze's rear seat is tight, but 
the interior mixes interesting 
textures and quality 
switchgear. On the outside, 
the Cruze wears beautiful 
crimson paint and blingitty- 
bling chrome wheels. It looks 
expensive, yet carries a 
modest $19,745 sticker. 

I 




With a refined 
chassis and 

well-executed 
interior, the Cruze 



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impressive small 
car ever. 



yfi WorldMags 



POPULARMECHANICS.COM 



JUNE 2011 75 







WorldMags 



HYUNDAI ELANTRA 



VW JETTA TDI 






HYUNDAI'S ALL-NEW 

2011 Elantra features 
aerodynamically slick "fluidic 
sculpture" styling with solid 
hardware— a new 148 -hp 
engine, an optional six-speed 
automatic that delivers the 
same fuel-economy ratings 
as the manual, six airbags, 
plenty of standard features 
and a USB port for plumbing 
into the sound system. This 
is a well-done conventional 
car that's just not pioneering 
anything. The interior 
decoration is restrained, the 
materials are high-quality 
(almost like a Honda's), and 
the controls are logically 
arrayed. Even back-seat 
passengers shouldn't 
complain. Much. Beyond 
that, the Elantra rides 
comfortably, is quick enough 
to stay out of trouble and 
handles okay even if the 
electric power steering is a 

bit numb. The Elantra is not 
sporty; rather, it's quiet and 
comfortable. The fuel 
economy was the lowest of 
the group, but with an 
as-tested price of $17,760, 
Elantra buyers can afford a 
few extra gallons. 



PM 
TESTED 



STATS 



PRICE 

(BASE/AS TESTED): 

$17,080/$17,760 

POWERTRAIN: 148 hp/ 
131 lb-ft 1.8-liter 14, 
6A 

WHEELBASE (in.): 106.3 
LENGTH (in.): 178.3 
ACCELERATION (sec): 
0-60 mph: 8.89 
40-70 mph: 6.89 
QUARTER-MILE (sec/ 
mph): 16.48 @ 84.10 
BRAKING, 60-0 mph 
(ft): 122.4 

SLALOM (mph): 69.3 
LANE CHANGE (mph): 
50.4 
SKIDPAD (g's): 0.81 







Like the Sonata, 
Hyundai's Elantra 

provides a hand- 
some body and an 
'fncient powertrain 



[•lvflimtttrai 



that doesn't feel 



$ WorldMags 



EPA 
CITY 



EPA 
HWY 



PM 
TESTED 




VOLKSWAGEN'S 

turbodiesels remain 
boutique items here in 
America. With the new Jetta, 
however, that boutique is 
looking like a Walmart. The 
Americanized Jetta is bigger 
and roomier than the 

previous model, and a 
simpler beam axle has 
replaced the independent 
rear suspension. That change 
won't affect most buyers. 



STATS 



PRICE 

(BASE/AS TESTED): 

$24,965/$24,965 

POWERTRAIN: 140 hp/ 

236 lb-ft 2.0-liter 
turbodiesel 14, 6M 

WHEELBASE (in.): 104.4 
LENGTH (in.): 182.2 
ACCELERATION (sec): 
0-60 mph: 8.77 
40-70 mph: 6.95 
QUARTER-MILE (sec/ 
mph): 16.41 @ 81.96 
BRAKING, 60-0 mph 
(ft): 112.6 

SLALOM (mph): 72.2 
LANE CHANGE (mph): 
51.5 
SKIDPAD (g's): 0.85 



However, each one will notice 
how the new Jetta's interior 
feels cheaper and seems 
more antiseptic than we're 
used to in VWs, a conse- 
quence of the gas-powered 
Jetta's $15,995 starting 
price. The diesel version has 
copious amounts of 
satisfying low-end torque, 
and it was the only car to top 
40 mpg in our test. But as 
much as we love diesels, the 
Jetta is not far enough ahead 
to make it the obvious 
choice. Besides the $4000- 
plus premium for the TDI, 
diesel fuel is about 30 cents 
per gallon more expensive 
than gas, and it's still a chore 
finding filling stations that 
stock the fuel, pm 








The Jetta is the 
only, small sedan 
available with a 
diesel engine, and 
its cruising effi- 
ciency suits 
imericans' love o: 
road trips. 



POPULARMECHANICS.COM 



JUNE 2011 77 






WorldMags 




















PM GOES NATIVE AT CABIN BLUFF, A HUNTING AND 
FISHING RETREAT 




COASTAL GEORGIA, AND 
PINPOINTS OTHER PRIME MULTISPORT DESTINATIONS 
ACROSS THE COUNTRY. 




BY MATT HENDRICKSON PHOTOGRAPHS BY SARAH SHATZ STYLING BY INESSAH SELDITZ 




$ WorldMags 



WorldMags 



P0PULARMECHANICS.COM 



JUNE 2011 79 



Clay pigeons {like the orange one shown at left) aren't the only targets 
at Cabin Bluff, where quail abound in the fields beside the Cumberland 
River. Kayaking and fishing are also popular at the retreat; a pickup 
truck with a roomy bed— such as the Ford F-150 SVT Raptor, below— 
comes in mighty handy for hauling gear. 



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ou know the kind of 
sleep that's so deep 
you wake up wonder- 
ing where you are? I 
remember, before 
dropping into the 
abyss last night, the 
patter of raindrops on 
the cabin roof and a 
whiff of salt air. Now the sun is peeking 
into my room through wooden blinds. I 
rewind and add up the details: I'm at 
Cabin Bluff, on the Georgia coast, my 
base camp for a few days of bonding 
with nature. Bleary-eyed, I shuffle to the 
dining room, grab a mug of coffee and 
head out to the dock on the Cumber- 
land River. The cool air warms up slowly 
as the sun rises over the marsh. 

The water is as still as a wing-shot 
quail. A few egrets glide past me, 
flashes of snowy white. The strong cof- 
fee shakes the cobwebs from my head. 
All of a sudden — booml Evidently some 
early risers are getting in a few pre- 
breakfast shots on the 13-station sport- 
ing clays course. I wander toward the 
noise and meet up with Scott Revels 
and Seth Brock, two locals with Beretta 
20-gauges slung over their shoulders. 
"Wakey'up?" Scott says, smirking. 
"No, just scared the hell out of me," 
I reply, my heart thudding in my chest. 



BEACH GETAWAYS ARE FINE, even if 
all you do is body surf and dip into the 
cooler of beers at your feet. Or maybe 
you've taken the family for a theme- 
park experience — also fine, but not the 
kind of trip that frees your mind and 
feeds your soul. To accomplish that, 
you need to head outdoors and get the 
blood pumping in a place that natural- 
ly lends itself to multiple activities. 
Cabin Bluff fits the bill. Michigan's 
Howard E. Coffin — a pioneer in the 
automotive and aviation industries — 
bought Cabin Bluff, a game preserve 
and playground for the rich, in 1928. 



WorldMags 



80 JUNE 2011 



P0PULARMECHANICS.COM 



Today, the compound is more accessi- 
ble but retains its rustic charm; little 
time here is spent idly, which was also 
true back in the day. Sporting clays, 
pedal kayaking and fishing are on my 
to-do list. There are also bike trails and 
a six-hole golf course on-site (though I 
won't have time to enjoy them). In fact, 
much of the territory around Cabin 
Bluff — along the coast and a tad 
inland — is dotted with places that suit 
the one-location, many-activities con- 
cept, whether you prefer hunting, hik- 
ing, boating or off-roading. 

Right now I can't wait to get my 
hands on a shotgun. I wolf down some 
eggs and grits, find Scott and gear up 
(Cabin Bluff provides outfitting, or you 
can BYOG: bring your own guns); then 
we motor a half-mile in his pickup to 
the course. At the first few stations, 



how to SHOOT 
SPORTING CLAYS 



Jon Kent is the manager of the Sea 
Island Shooting School, near Cabin 
Bluff. Here are his five basics: 

1. You don't aim a shotgun; you 
point it, as if it were an extension of 
your index finger. 

2. Before the clay flies, note the hold 
point (the spot along the clay's path 
where you first point the gun), the 
focal point (where you will first see 
the clay) and the break point (where 

I the clay will be when you fire). 



. Call pull and focus on the 
clay— and only the clay. 



clays fly out of shacks along the shore- 
line, propelled by throwers operated 
via remote controls on the shooting 
platforms. The clays' speed and flight 
paths differ, mimicking various fowl. I 
have some shooting experience, but 
eight clays whiz by before I nail one; 
Scott knocks out six in a row. 

"You're waiting too long," he says. 
"You gotta pull the trigger sooner." 

I had been holding fire until the 
clay passed its apex and began its 
descent — and thus was farther away 
and effectively smaller. So, the quicker 
the shot, the larger the target. I adjust 
my thinking and hit two out of three. 

As Scott and I stroll along the piney 
path that connects the shooting sta- 
tions, Seth and another friend, Josh 
Williams, join us. All three guys grew 
up on nearby St. Simons Island; they've 
been hunting and fishing these parts 
since they learned how to walk. Now 
they're my base-camp buddies, and we 
hit a few more stations, including one 
where the clays skitter along the 
ground like a rabbit: Shooting clays is 
fun and good hunting practice. 

With river fishing and kayaking 
planned for the afternoon, Scott, Seth, 
Josh and I put up our guns, grab lunch 
at the main cabin — the nucleus of a 



This is the beauty of the base-camp 
concept: Regardless of what outdoor 
sport you choose to indulge in, the 
action is always close at hand. 

Outfitter Michael Gowen is waiting 
for us at the sandy staging area at the 
river's edge. He presents us with a 
range of watercraft, including a pedal 
kayak, which is like a recumbent bike 
on the water. It keeps a fisherman's 
hands free for casting, but I just like the 
fact that it's really fast. "People go for 
miles in these things," Michael says, 
nudging me away from the riverbank. 

Once I find my lane, I'm skimming 
along at a wicked clip. Soon my thighs 
are burning, and I'm out of visual 
range of the other guys, who are fish- 
ing closer to land. I whip around and 
book back toward them, trying to hit 
the put-in point but blowing past it; 
the craft is fast yet hard to control. I 
glide to a halt, then circle back and 
beach the kayak, pouring sweat. 
"That's one helluva ride," I say, dis- 
mounting and heading to my cabin for 
a breather. 

At twilight I hear pounding on my 
door and the rallying cry: "Oyster 
roast!" Following Southern tradition, 
Cabin Bluff has laid out a spread of 
oysters, seafood chowder and more for 



* 



cluster of eight guest cabins set among a sunset feast. I'm not big on oysters, 



a grove of pines, live oaks and palms 
and just a short walk to the riverbank. 



but I shrug and do as the natives do. I 
grab one from the pot, split it apart, 




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FN 



OUTDOOR 

ESSENTIALS 



Many sporting retreats provide 

all the gear you need— shotguns, 

boats, kayaks, fishing tackle and 

more— but if you want to acquire 

your own arsenal, here are 

a few possibilities. 



Mossberg SA-20 
Semi-Automatic 20-Gauge 

$496 1 mossberg.com 

Ruger Red Label 
20-Gauge Over/Under 

$2015 \ruger.com 



Native Watercraft 
Ultimate 12 Propel 

$2099 1 nativewatercraft.com 

Heritage RedFish 12 
Fishing Kayak 

$779 1 heritagekayaks.com 




Shimano Spheros FB 
Spinning Reel 

From $1 10 | basspro.com 

Frequent Flyer Fly/ 
Spin Rod Combo 

$369 I orvis.com 





add some cocktail sauce and horserad- 
ish and . . . down the hatch. It tastes as 
if the natural environment were dis- 
tilled into this salty, earthy morsel. 
Later, filled to the gills, we sit outside 
around a roaring fire, enjoying a few 
beers. After midnight I amble back to 
my cabin, anticipating the morning 
wake-up call to go ocean fishing. 

I'm a bit late for the appointed 7 am 
launch, but I'm not the only one. All of 
the base campers are guilty of having 
overindulged last night. Regardless, we 
shuffle to the dock, where our guide, 
Toby Mohrman, wearing a bright yel- 
low rain jacket, stands on the deck of a 
26-foot Sea Cat. "Y'all got after it last 
night, huh?" he says with a sly smile. 

We murmur and nod, grabbing the 
poles and settling in for the short ride 
downriver to the open sea. We're a bit 
out of season for this type of fishing; in 
late spring, when the water is warmer, 
tarpon, king mackerel and black bass 
abound, Toby says. But now our casts 
yield just a few nibbles, and the drizzle 
becomes a steady pour, so Toby steers 
us back upriver and docks at Cabin 
Bluff. "Lay off the booze and get your 
butts out here early next time," he 
chides us good-naturedly. 

He's right, of course, and I silently 
vow to return someday to this hidden 
paradise. Beach vacation? Nah. This is 
where the action is. 



LOCAL KNOWLEDGE: Coastal Georgia is 
damp and often rainy; evenings are 
cool, except in summer. Be sure to pack 
water-repellent and moisture-wicking 
clothing, and dress in layers. 




l 



2 



3 



resort Cabin Bluff, from $450 
nightly per person, includes all 
meals and most activities, with 
outfitting, cabinbluff.com 

house rental On nearby Jekyll 
Island, a home that sleeps six 
can be had for less than $1000 
per week.jekyll-island.com 

camping Jekyll Island 
Campground is a haven by the 
sea; from $21 per night. 

jekyllisland.com 



SINGLE 
LOCATIONS, 
UCH TO DO 



THREE MORE GREAT PLACES 
TO SET UP BASE CAMP 






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lear water, craggy re 
rocks and blue skies 
create an ethereal 
setting at Lake Havasu. 




1 though it's a major 
spring break destina- 
tion, Lake Havasu — a 
19,300-acre reservoir 
fed by the Colorado 
River and contained by 
the Parker Dam — man- 
ages to balance out the 
Jell-O-shot-quaffing and beer pong with a 
healthy dose of sun-drenched outdoor 
activity. Lake Havasu City is surprisingly 
quaint, replete with a reconstruction of 
the original 1830s London Bridge, reach- 
ing across the lake to Pittsburgh Point. 
(Robert McCulloch, the automotive pio- 
neer and maker of the eponymous chain 
saw, had the bridge relocated here in 





y WorldMags 



WorldMags 



82 JUNE 2011 



POPULARMECHANICS.COM 



1968.) Copper Canyon is the lake's party 
central; on the weekend, so many boats 
tie up here that you can literally walk on 
water. There are also plenty of quiet, iso- 
lated places to weigh anchor and chill out 
on the shore. If you want action, diving', 
waterskiingand fishingoutfitters abound 
(for details, see golakehavasu.com). The 
Copper Basin Dunes, 1275 acres of sand 
hills and mountain trails maintained by 
the U.S. Bureau of Land Management, 
are off-roading nirvana (go to blm.gov/az/ 
st/ en/prog/recreation/ ohv/ copper.html). 



PM 



0UTD00RESSENTIALS 




Kymco 
MXU150ATV 

$2999 I kymcousa.com 



Honda Rincon 

$8799 1 power 
sports.honda.com 



LOCAL KNOWLEDGE: Dehydration is 
a real threat in the desert. Plan on 
drinking at least 3 liters of water a 
day, and even more if you're also 
enjoying some adult beverages. 



where TO STAY 




© 



resort Havasu Dunes Resort 
kitchen-equipped one- and 
two-bedroom condos that sleep 
up to six, with on-site laundry, are 
just right for base campers. In 
Lake Havasu City; from $109 a 
night, havasu-dunes.com 

houseboats The town is loaded 
with chain motels, but why not 
take advantage of the natural 
surroundings and stay on a boat? 
Lakehavasuhouseboating. com 
offers a range of floating palaces. 

camping The beachfront Crazy 
Horse Campgrounds is in the 
thick of things; you can escape 
for a hike on the Sara Park Wash, 
where the Crack-in-the-Rock trail 
leads through a canyon before 
you arrive at the lake. 
golakehavasu. com 




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Whitewater rafting is 
i perfect pastime near 
pristine Mount Hood. 



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he Mount Hood area is among the most 
beautiful and geographically diverse 
outdoor-sports destinations in the 
nation, if not the world. It is possible — if 
you're an iron man, but nevertheless — to 
ski the Palmer Glacier (elevation: 7700 
feet) in the morning*, rock-climb the 
bolted crag of French's Dome in the after- 
noon and finish your day with a 100-foot 
free-fall off a bungee tower at the Adven- 
ture Park at Mt. Hood Skibowl before you 
hit dinner. While some areas can get 
crowded (the adventure park draws lots 
of families, plus skiing enthusiasts who 
need a summer fix), it's remarkably easy 
to get away from it all, and from everyone 
else, to enjoy the outdoors in this part of 
Oregon, about an 80-mile drive east of 
Portland (and two hours from that city's 




LOCAL KNOWLEDGE: If you travel via 
Portland, stop for a meal at one of the 
city's many food carts; the Big Egg 
offers perhaps the world's best fried- 
egg sandwich, foodcartsportland.com 



PM 



OUTDOOR 

ESSENTIALS 




Honda CRF230F 

$3899 | powersports 

.honda.com 

KTM450X&W 
SixDays Edition 

$8899 I ktmusa.com 



where 
TO STAY 



1 



RESORT 

Rooms at 

the Lodge at 

Government 
Camp offer 

entrancing views 

of Mount Hood. 

From $199. 

thelodgeatgovem 
mentcamp.com 



2 



HOUSE 
RENTAL 

Cabins, vacation 
homes, bed-and- 
breakfasts: Take 
your pick, from 
lowball to 
five-star prices. 

mounthoodinfo 
.com 



3 




CAMPING 

Mt. Hood 
National Forest 
has 81 camp- 
grounds. The 
Trillium Lake sits 
at the water s 
edge, the Tilly 
Jane at the base 
of the volcano. Call 
503-668-1700. 




? WorldMags 



COMPARATIVELY SPEAKING 

NO COMPARISON. 



r 








The first cordless outdoor power tools good enough to be called STIHL. 

No gas. No cord. No emissions. No compromise. Introducing STIHL cordless electric outdoor power tools with 36 volts of power. These 
high performance machines feature superior operating speeds so you get more done in less time. The heart of the STIHL system is our 
36-volt Lithium Ion battery that provides up to 45 minutes of run time r with no gradual loss of power, and can be charged in as little as 25 
minutes with the optional rapid charger. The greener solution that doesn't sacrifice performance. For product information: 
STIHLUSA.com For dealer information: STIHLDEALERS.com or stihlusa.mobi 






Available Fall 2011 



Available Fall 201 1 



Available Summer 2011 



HSKH 





? WorTdMags 




WorldMags 



84 JUNE 2011 



POPULARMECHANICS.COM 



airport). A big part of Mount Hood's 
attraction for true outdoor enthusiasts is 
that while it is essentially a sprawling 
resort, it flies under the radar relative to 
other vacation destinations in the West, 
such as Vail and Aspen. (Upscale shop- 
ping near Mount Hood? Not happening.) 
The geographical feature that gives the 



-..-• 



■»- 



■--■ 



area its name is an 11,200-foot, snow- 
covered, potentially active volcano. It 
serves as a beacon no matter what adven- 
ture yen you happen to be indulging. You 
can see the craggy white peak from 
McCubbins Gulch, site of one of the only 
legal dirt-biking trail networks in the 
area. (The U.S. Forest Service limits off- 



roading to a relatively small portion of the 
1-million-acre Mt. Hood National Forest.) 
Given the steep elevation changes and 
numerous rivers around Mount Hood, 
the Whitewater rafting is also topnotch. 
Clackamas River gets the most traffic, but 
outfitters also offer trips to the more 
remote Hood, Molalla and Sandy rivers. 



Scrambling on the dunes, which 

reach as high as 450 feet, is a 

Traverse City tradition. 



PM 



OUTDOOR 

ESSENTIALS 



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UPPER 



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Kawasaki Jet Ski 
800 SX-R 

$7899 | kawasaki.com 

Sea-Doo 
RXT-XaS260 

$15,999 1 sea-doo.com 



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he wooded ridges and 450-foot sand dunes along the shores 
of Grand Traverse Bay and Lake Michigan make this popular 
midwestern destination feel more western than one would 
imagine — it's like Big Sky country without the major trek to 
get there. Cool nights give way to warm summer days that 
seem to last forever: Here in the far north, the sun sets late, 
and darkness doesn't descend until well past 9 pm. 

Traverse City proper has a kitschy side, proudly wearing 
the badge of cherry capital of the world, and orchards and 
food shops dedicated to the fruit abound in the area. 

But the region is equally proud to be Michigan's outdoor 
playground. Watersports dominate the activities menu — for 
instance, zipping around on personal water vehicles on the 
lakes, or canoeing, tubing or rafting on the Pine, Boardman, 
Manistee, Crystal and Betsie rivers. 

If you'd rather not get your feet wet, there's also plenty to 
do on terra fir ma. More than a dozen golf courses lie within 
20 miles of Traverse City; hiking trails are plentiful in the 
area; and the gently rolling hills and well-maintained roads 
make for excellent touring by bicycle. pm 



where TO STAY 



LOCAL KNOWLEDGE: Bug repellent is a must; the mosquitoes and black flies will 
try to eat you alive. Also, bring a sweater or two; nights are chilly year-round. 



resort Grand Traverse Resort & 
Spa is a cost-effective bet for a 
family or large group, offering hotel 
or house-rental accommodations. 
grandtraverseresort. com 

house rental There are literally 
hundreds of condo/home rentals— 
and numerous base-camp sites to 
pick from— in the Traverse City area. 
Check out visitupnorth.com to see 
the range of possibilities. 

camping There are 35 camp- 
grounds within 30 miles of Traverse 
City. The Sand Lakes Quiet Area 
allows no motor vehicles, so it's 
ideal for tranquil hiking, biking and 
swimming. Timber Ridge is more 
action-packed, michigan.org/ 
p I aces-to-stay/campg rounds/ 
default aspx?city=G3602 




1 WorldMags 



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CALLING 
ALL VOTE 





























ow that the ideas have been submitted for the here's how: 



Cub Cadet Future Vision Contest and the expert 

panel haS Selected their Top 50, itS yOUr tum tO VOte between May 1 and June 16. After voting 



Go to wwvr.cubcadet.com/voting 
Cast your vote for the most innovative idea 



for the most innovative idea of all. So set voting now 





because your vote automatically enters you for a chance 
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closes, the 5 ideas that earn the most votes 
will each win the grand prize: 
Their idea featured in the November 
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sweepstakes RULES: No purchase necessary to enter or win. The Cub Cadet Future Vision Contest: 
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Mechanics 



WorldMags 



When the First Responder 




You 



IN AN EMERGENCY, THE FIRST STEP IS TO CALL 911, BUT THE ACTIONS YOU 
TAKE WHILE PROFESSIONAL HELP IS ON THE WAY CAN MEAN THE DIFFERENCE 
BETWEEN LIFE AND DEATH. HERE'S HOW TO STEP UP FROM INNOCENT 
BYSTANDER TO INSTANT HERO. By Kalee Thompson 



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M AS SEEN ON IV 



th E fireball: "On TV, when a car catches fire you usually get this huge explosion/' says ex-British Commando 
Paul Burton, a veteran of war zones and natural disasters. Reality is less dramatic: "When fire builds up pressure 
in the fuel tank, the valve shoots off and a jet of fuel comes out and catches fire, but the car won't explode." 



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JUNE 2011 87 




SA \/E SOMEONE EROM 
k IIC CAR 



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It's late, and you're driving on a 
desolate highway. You see an 
orange glow in the distance — fire. 
Soon, you arrive at the scene. A 
car with a crushed front end has 
flames spilling from under the 
hood, and someone's trapped 
inside. You dial 911, and then . . . 

CREATE A SAFE ZONE, says 
Ron Moore, a Texas fireman who 
has taught extraction techniques 
to first responders for 30-plus 
years. Seventy people die every 
year because of secondary 
collisions. So block the site with 
your own car and flip on the 
hazards. 

ARM YOURSELF with a tire 
iron and, if possible, a fire 
extinguisher, and don gloves and 
protective clothing. 

WALK-DON'T RUN-toward 
the crash. Running can cause an 
adrenaline and endorphin rush, 
and kill clear thinking. 

FIGHT THE FIRE. Stand uphill 
and upwind of the flames and 
discharge your extinguisher 
along the base of the fire. No 
extinguisher? For a small blaze, 
scoop up snow or dirt to snuff the 
flames. Above all, be realistic. 
"You don't use a squirt gun to 
shoot an elephant," Moore says. 

GAIN ACCESS. If the doors are 
locked, smash the window 
farthest from the victim by 
striking it low in the corner with 
your tire iron. 

FREE THE VICTIM. Normally, 
you shouldn't move a crash 
victim, but if fire still threatens, 
hook your hands under his 
armpits, cradle his head and 
neck in your forearms, and 
gently drag him to safety. Keep 
the victim's head and torso 
aligned as you move him, in case 
of a head or spinal injury. 



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BRING A PERSON BACK 10 LIFE 



Foryears,CPR 
instructors have 
drilled students 



don't need 
mouth-to-mouth 
at all. A new, 



drowning victim, 
two breaths per 



1« Cardiac 
victims may 
display seizure- 
like symptoms 
(fists clenching, 
arms straighten- 
ing, and then 
fish-like breaths) 
before passing 
out. Immediately 
call 911 if you see 
this, then begin 
CPR right away. 
2» Lift up the 
victims shirt, 
flatten your 
palms between 
his nipples and, 



30 compressions with straight 



ith ABC: airway, simpler method is are still advised.) 



breathing (mouth- designed to 



to-mouth) and 
chest compres- 
sions. That 
approach got the 
boot last year, 

since the majority 
of adults who 
need CPR are 
cardiac victims, 
and studies have 
shown that they 



encourage 
anyone who 
witnesses an 
adults collapse to 
help immediately 
with "hands only" 
CPR-chest 
pumps that keep 
blood circulating 
to the brain. (For 
a child or 



No training is 
required, and 
good-Samaritan 
laws protect 
citizens trying to 
do the right thing. 
But once you 
start CPR, do not 
stop until the 
person stirs or 
professional help 
arrives. 



elbows, start 
pressing. 
3 •Your palms 
should compress 
the chest cavity 
by one-third. 
Press rapidly: The 
recommended 
rate of 100 
thrusts a minute 
just about 
matches the beat 
of 'Stay in' Alive." 



KNOW YOUR DEFIBRILLATOR 

For most victims of cardiac arrest, CPR serves only to keep 
blood flowing to the brain until help arrives. An automated 
external defibrillator (AED) can jump-start a stopped heart. 
Now more common in public places, AEDs diagnose a patient 
before discharging and can guide a bystander through usage. 




1ALK SOMEONE EJOM FROM 1HE EM 



Of the 35,000 suicides in the United 
States each year, several hundred are 
jumpers. At the Golden Gate Bridge last 
year, there were 32 suicides — but at least 
75 more were prevented by trained 
officers or alert passersby. "If you 
encounter someone who is about to 



Eve Meyer, executive director of San 
Francisco Suicide Prevention. She 
advises approaching potential victims 
calmly and never reaching out to grab 
them, which could precipitate a jump. 
Instead, ask, "Are you okay?" and then 
"Will you walk with me?" Switching the 
focus to yourself is the key: "People in 
crisis will do a favor for another person, 



jump, the impulse is to become excited, even though they won't do something 



to scream and run toward them," says 



for themselves," Meyer says. 




$ WorldMags 






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WorldMags 











88 JUNE 2011 



POPULARMECHANICS.COM 



AVOID THE 

surge Once 
you're trapped in a 
crush, it's difficult 
to escape, but if 
you sense that a 
crowd is getting 
dangerous, move 
perpendicular to 
the surge to reach 
the edge of the 
crowd. 



protect your lungs The greatest 
danger in a crowd crush is compressive 
asphyxiation. Hold your arms akimbo to gain 
breathing room. 








SUR W MACRO m CRUSH 



bows and 

ngout. 

People suffocate 
in thatenviron- 



"When a crowd 

starts to surge, it 2004 Summer 



consulted for the crush, you're 



can collapse a 
concrete wall or 
easily push over a 
chain-link fence 
or other barriers 
you wouldn't even 



// 



magme, says 
James A. McGee, 
a stadium 
security expert 
and former FBI 
officer who 



Olympics in 
Athens, Greece. 
Just two or three 
guys pushing 
unknowingly at 
the back of the 
mob can easily 
create a ripple 
effect that will 
knock people 
over— and if 
you're inside the 



pretty much at 
the mercy of the 
surge. "You're not 
goingtobeable 
to fight your way 
out," McGee says. 
Instead, try to buy 
yourself as much 
personal space as 
you can by 
keepingyour 
arms at your side, 
bending your 



ment. They can't 
even expand their 
ungs," McGee 
says. Counterin- 
tuitively, most 
crowd crushes 
occur when a 
mass of people 



s trying to get 
into a stadium, 
concert or 
store— not out. If 
you're at the front 
of a line, scope 
out an exit path 
before the crowd 
starts to move. 



M AS SEEN ON IV 




THE PANICKED PUBLIC 

"Hollywood has a lot to answer for in terms of people running and 
screaming and crying On a crisis]," risk and terror expert Dr. Brooke 
Rogers says. In fact, people generally tend to remain calm, even in the 
face of disasters like 9/11. "We call it the myth of the panic-prone 
public. Yes, some people get upset, but you find that the majority will 
try to comfort one another and cope together." 



$ WorldMags 





GET OUT. If someone has 
broken into your house, your 
very best bet is to flee, according 
to Fred Mastison, president of 
Force Options, an Arizona- 
based tactical and self-defense 
training firm. Of course, that 
may not be possible if, for 
instance, you're on the second 
floor or there are kids in the 
house. So Mastison recom- 
mends designating a "safe 
room" with a solid door, a 
deadbolt, a phone, a flashlight 
and tools to protect yourself. 

ONCE YOU'RE IN THE 

room, call 911; stay on the line 
until help arrives. Let the 
intruder know you're home by 
yelling that police are on the 
way. An estimated 86 percent of 
home break-ins are robberies, 
many motivated by the need for 
drug money. Usually, criminals 
flee when they realize someone 
is home. 

STILL, YOU MUST prepare 
for a violent confrontation, 
which is why Mastison teaches 
fighting and firearms skills. 
Using a gun for self-defense 
requires regular training and a 
willingness to use lethal force. 

OTHERWISE, arm yourself 
with pepper spray or a civilian 
Taser. "I'm not a big fan of 
impact weapons," says 
Mastison, who advises against 
the use of baseball bats and 
knives: "They're a lot harder 
than you'd think to use against 
a dedicated adversary." The 
Taser, on the other hand, is a 
great tool: "Anybody and 
everybody can have a Taser now. 
I go through the tasing as part of 
my training, and it is debilitat- 
ing. I'm a big cat, and it stops 
me dead in my tracks." 




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KNOW YOUR TASER The civilian TaserC2 shoots electrode darts up to 15 feet. They transmit a high- 
voltage pulse to incapacitate an attacker. After the darts are ejected, the Taser can be used as a contact stun device. 












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SURVIVE A NUCLEAR EVEN1 



building is even 
better, and a 
basement is better 

A modern nuclear warning before an still. "Go in, stay in, 

disaster is less 

likely to come 

from an all-out 

nuclear war than 

from a power- 
plant radiation 

leak, like the one 

that resulted from 



the Japanese 
earthquake and 

tsunami, or from 
small-scale 
improvised "dirty 
bomb" weapons. 
If there is enough 



event, follow the 
evacuation 
instructions of 
authorities. But if 
a large-scale 
release of 
radiation has 
already occurred, 
stay put. Remain- 
ing inside a car for 
several hours 
could double your 
chances of 
survival; a window 
ess room inside a 



tune in" is today's 
mandate in any 
sort of chemical, 
biological, 
radiological or 
nuclear attack, 
explains Dr. 
Brooke Rogers, a 
lecturer in risk and 
terror in the 
Department of 
War Studies, 
Kings College 
London. Fight the 
instinct to find and 



meet up with 
family. Instead, 
follow these 
guidelines and 
know that you 
can't feel, see, 
smell or taste 
radiation. 



IF YOU 
ARE . . . 

INDOORS 

Close all windows 
and turn off heat, 
air conditioning 
and ventilation. Go 
to the basement, 
as far away as 
possible from 



doors and 
windows. Cover 
your nose and 
mouth with a 
mask or cloth. 



OUTDOORS 

Cover your mouth 
and nose. Remove 
your outer layer of 
clothing, avoiding 
pulling it overyour 
head (cut or rip it if 
necessary). Find 
shelter quickly, 
and if possible 
rinse yourself with 
soap and water. 
Seek medical 



attention only if 
your wounds are 
life-threatening; 
avoiding further 
exposure is your 
biggest concern. 



IN YOUR CAR 

Pull overturn off 
the ignition and 
shut any vents 
that draw in 
outside air, 
includingyoura/c. 
Cover your mouth 
and nose and 
monitor the 
situation on your 
cars radio. 




$ WorldMags 



WorldMags 



90 JUNE 2011 



POPULARMECHANICS.COM 



FIND THE STRONG ICE 

Your best bet after falling 
through ice is to crawl out the 
way you came in— that's the 

ice that has already supported 
your weight. 








ESC A PE EM ICE 



People think 
that if you fall 
into ice water, 
you become 
hypothermic 
within minutes. 
This is incorrect/ 
says University 
of Manitoba 
cold-water 
survival expert 
Dr. Gordon 
Giesbrecht, aka 
Professor 



Popsicle. But if 
you think that, 
then you're likely 
to panic, make 
bad decisions 
and die." If you're 
the one left 
standing after a 
friend plunges 
through the ice, 
you should stay 
put. You won't be 
any help if you 
rush to the 



—and end 
up as a second 
casualty. If you 
have a rope or 
long branch 
within reach, you 
can use it to help 
pull your buddy 
to safety. 
Otherwise, you'll 
have to talk him 
through 

self-rescue. Help 
him calm down 



by instructing 
him to take slow, 
deep breaths, 
and let him know 
he is not in 
immediate peril 
(it takes about 
an hour to lose 
consciousness 
from hypotherm- 
ia). Once he's 
calm, tell him 
to follow 
these steps: 



EIBBJA EIRE 



More than 80 percent of the 2780 Americans who died in 
residential fires in 2008 were in one- or two-family homes 



1* Place your 
forearms 
forward and flat 
on the ice edge, 
then kickyour 
feet, which will 
create upward 
and forward 
bodily thrust. 

Keep kicking 
and move your 
weight forward 
onto your elbows 
as you shimmy 
your body up— 
inch by inch— in 
an Army crawl. 
Don't give up if 
the edge breaks: 
Just keep 
moving forward 
and repeating 
the motions until 
you reach solid 
ice. 

3* Once you're 
out of the water, 
don't stand up 
right away. 
Instead, roll away 
from the fissure 
until you're on 
thicker ice. 



that's the bad news. The good news is that 99 percent of house 
fires are put out before they turn deadly. To stay on the good side of these statistics, 
stow fire extinguishers in your kitchen, shop and garage, and be sure every family 
member knows how to use them. If a fire is contained and the flames are no more 
than waist-high, fight it with an extinguisher. Keep your back to an unobstructed exit 
as you empty your canister, aiming at the base of the flames. Stop if breathing becomes 
difficult — most fire deaths result from smoke inhalation. If possible, close doors as 
you escape. And don't risk trying to fight the blaze with the garden hose: It spews 
about 20 gallons a minute, in which time a firefighter's nozzle blasts 250 gallons. 




• • - am , 

OEBZ 

***** 



KNOW YOUR FIRE EXTINGUISHER Fire extinguishers are rated: A (wood, paper), B (flammable 
liquids), C (electrical) or D (lab chemicals). Home extinguishers should be rated for all but D. 



911 BASICS 



Use a landline. 
Home phones 
provide 
operators with 
your address; 
cellphones do 
not. If you must 
use your cell, te 
the operator 

your location 
immediately. 



Stay on the line 
Answer the 
operators 
questions 
succinctly, and 
don't hang up 
until you're told 
to do so or help 
arrives. 



Have a backup 
plan. Put local 
police and fire 
stations on 
speed dia 



If you suspect a 
poisoning, dial 
the National 
Poison Control 
Hotline at 
800-222-1222, 
which will 
connect you 
with an expert 
for emergency 
advice. Call 911 
only if a 

poisoningvictim 
has passed out 
oris having a 
seizure or 
difficulty 
breathing. 



Know when not 
to call 911. It's 
for real, 

life-threatening 
human emer- 
gencies. Cat up 
a tree? Call 411 
or your town's 
general 
information line 




? WorldMags 





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More than 3400 



that floats will 



Americans drown suffice. If you're 



in a typical year, 
several dozen of 
them while trying 
to save someone 
else. 'Just 
because 
someone is a 
good swimmer 
does not mean 
they are capable 
of safely 
performing a 
rescue/' says Bill 
Humphreys, who 
has performed 
about 1000 
ocean saves in 
34 years as a 
California 



the rescuer, swim 
out to the victim 
and hand over 
the flotation 
device without 
letting him grab 
you. "If you're a 
good swimmer, 
in flat water a 
small child is not 
going to take you 
under," Hum- 
phreys says. "But 
even teenagers, 
when they're pan- 
icked, will be 
fighting for their 
lives— and cling 
to and climb up 



lifeguard. "Even a on anything to 



professional 
doesn'tjust run 
out into the 
water; the first 
thing he does is 
call for backup." 
Then he grabs a 
rescue buoy or 
tube; for 
non-pros, a 
surfboard, a life 
jacket or 
anything else 



get their head 
above water." If 
you put yourself 
within reach, that 
anything will be 
you. So let the 
victim get a hold 
of the piece of 
rescue equip- 
ment, then calm 
him down and 
begin paddling 
for land. 



HUMS SEEN ON IV 



FLAILING DROWNING VICTIMS 

"People waving for help, yelling and 
thrashing around in the water— that's 
what you see on television/' Hum- 
phreys says. Actual drowning is much 
more subtle: "The head is low. He might 
even be looking upward a little bit in an 
attempt to keep his mouth out of the 
water. Quite often his arms aren't 
above water, because he's too busy 
trying to use them to stay afloat." 



SURWEA 
BUILDING COLLAPSE 



A fallen building, common after 
an earthquake, is extremely 
unstable. Whether you are trying 
to escape or free someone else 
from the wreckage, move 
H^* carefully. If you find someone 

pinned under the rubble, first 
calm the person down — then start figuring out what you can use for 
leverage to free them. "Whatever' s pinning them, you'll need to move 
it only 1 inch before you can slide them out," explains retired 
firefighter John O'Connell, who responded to both the Oklahoma City 
bombing and New York's Ground Zero and is president of the training 
facility Collapse Rescue Systems. "But you still have to be extremely 
aware, as you pry up on anything, so you don't disturb the pile and 
cause a secondary collapse. That's the biggest killer of rescuers." 
Time is also critical: If you don't free a badly injured victim in roughly 
the first hour, crush injury syndrome (kidney failure due to damaged 
muscle tissue in the bloodstream) comes into play. "If after 6 hours 
you free them and there's no medical aid, they're probably not going 
to survive," O'Connell says. Once you free your victim, keep him alert 
and give him water. If you're trapped in the structure, yell or bang on a 
pipe to alert rescuers, and be methodical. "If you just start smacking 
some crap around, they may think it's falling debris," O'Connell says. 



v>: 






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WorldMags 







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WorldMags 






1 1 

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THE MOST SPECTACULA 



ILLUSIONS 



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WorldMags 



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ast month, we told you about the Popular retro shape. He stretched the car's panels 



Mechanics TopShop Project Mustang. We told 
you about the Victory motorcycle that went 
along with it, about how we charged a handful 
of small New Jersey shops with creating the 
ultimate weekend getaway package. The goal 
was a custom bike and car that would enable 



and character lines, tweaking and massaging 
them until the Ford gained an angry, next- 
generation vibe. Netcong turned his design 



into spectacular, candy-colored reality, and 
a host of chassis, brake and engine upgrades 
came along for the ride. A laundry list of 




two people to take a killer weekend vacation creature- comfort interior modifications 

without trading thrills for creature comforts. capped things off. 

The motorcycle is the final piece of 
the puzzle. We chose the 2010 Victory 
Hammer S because it offers the look of 
an old-school cruiser and a hefty dose of 

turning an stock 2010 Chevrolet Camaro into contemporary technology. The Hammer's 



In many ways, this project is a 
continuation of last year's TopShop 



program. Twelve months ago, we conducted 
a nationwide search for a shop capable of 



inverted front forks and dual-disc front brakes 
let it stop and turn like a modern heavyweight, 
and its 250-mm rear tire helps put the 97- 



some thing special. The business we settled 

on, Netcong Auto Restorations, of Netcong, 

New Jersey, did just that. They cranked out a 

car that turned heads and shredded pavement hp V-twin's power to the ground. The only 

everywhere we took it. 

This year, we again subjected Netcong 
to our scrutiny and spotlight, but to keep 
things interesting, we upped the ante: We 
asked Grant Brazer, the 14-year-old son 
of Net cong's owners, to submit bodywork 
designs for the Ford. We purchased a trailer 
and engaged the services of Rollin' Fast Cycle into a more comfortable, more stylish piece, 
Sports of Lebanon, New Jersey, to spice our and they delivered. A Kicker stereo, fairing, 

bike up a bit. And we started planning a once- candy paint, and a king-and-queen seat were 
in-a-lifetime weekend trip that would take full matched with machined engine trim and LED 



drawback is the bike's bare-bones nature — 
we wanted a bit more wind protection and 
comfort for our time on the road. 

Enter Rollin' Fast. In addition to being 
a Victory dealer, Rollin' Fast specializes 
in custom motorcycle construction. We 
entrusted them with tweaking our Hammer 



advantage of both machines. 

Through the magic of Photoshop, Grant 
produced a futuristic take on the Mustang's 



accent lighting. We finished the project by 
having our small aluminum trailer painted 
Dupli- Color black. Then we headed west. 



Autolite specializes in original-equip- 
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he goal of this project was to build 
something that had never been built 
before — a fast, comfortable convertible 
that could tackle both a once-in-a-lifetime 
vacation and long use on the open road. 
In our quest for the ultimate weekend 
getaway, we needed a car that would 
combine a compliant ride with practical 
amenities and a lack of compromises. 
Most of all, because we're speed junkies, 
we knew our car couldn't be a slug at 
stoplights. 



hand tools can modify it to make it 
faster and more capable. It keys into the 
Popular Mechanics DIY ethos. We went 
searching for a destination to fit, a do-it- 
yourself vacation spot that would let our 
custom stars breathe. 

And so we went to Las Vegas. Nevada's 
most famous city is known as an adult 
Disneyland, but there's more to "Lost 
Wages" than, well, lost wages. Like the 
Ford, it's approachable and is relatively 
inexpensive to experience. The city is also 



The 412-hp, V-8-powered Mustang GT surrounded by fantastic natural wonders, 
convertible was perfect for the task. At just It's the traditional home of the extreme 



over $34,000, it's relatively inexpensive 
and can be bought by anyone with a 
full-time job. It's also relatively simple 
for a performance car, which means that 
anyone with common sense and a set of 



vacation — most people come here for the 
express purpose of having a very good time 

When we decided on Las Vegas, we 
chose a different path than most. This trip 
wouldn't focus on the world-famous Strip 



The slanting walls of 
MGM's pyramid -shaped 
Luxor hotel are an 
imposing sight. Vegas's 
unusually cloudy skies 
only served to amp up 
the building's eerie, old- 
world vibe. 



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the talents of Criss Angel in CRISS 



ANGEL Believe, a 90-minute production 
showcasing some of the most spectacular 
illusions ever created. Angel, recently 
crowned Magician of the Century, uses an 
arsenal of magic feats to leave guests in a 
state of awe and frustration. 



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SPECIAL ADVERTISING SECTION »»»»»»»»» 




«« 

The desert is a dirty place, and 
our trip west got the car and 
bike pretty filthy. A quick dash 
with Mothers California Gold 
Carnauba Wash and Wax and 
Back to Black Tire Shine did 
the trick. 




and the star-filled bars therein. We'd start 
there, sure, but with only two days and two 
nights available, we wanted to spend our 
time wisely. We decided to leave the Strip 
as a base of operations, nothing more. 

Our first stop was the MGM Luxor 
Resort & Casino. The Luxor's pyramid- 



Candies are never easy to lay down." 

The details behind that statement 
are interesting, and worth a momentary 
detour. Because candies hold reflective 
materials in suspension, they require 
precise application and can be difficult 
to work with. With our car, the problem 



shaped main building is an icon, but chiefly, wasn't so much technique as what the 

Netcong crew was trying to accomplish: 



the hotel fit with our theme: Like the 
Mustang, it offers good bang for the buck. 

The Egyptian-theme d Luxor is the 
second-largest hotel in Vegas, a massive, 
4400-room monument to old-world excess. 
The hotel's architecture is fascinating — 
everyone loves a good gimmick, especially 
one with inclined elevators — but it's also 
conveniently located. Because the Luxor 
is close to the Strip's hot spots but not in 
the thick of traffic, it's easy to get in and 
out of. We hit town late in the day, the 
hotel's massive black peak guiding our way. that glows and dances in the desert sun. 



Most automotive paints are 70 percent 
pigment, 30 percent reducers and solvents, 
but candies are 70 percent solvent- 
reducer, 30 percent pigment. With such a 
high percentage of solvent, paint lifting 
is common, and blending — the art of 
merging one color into the next — becomes 
difficult. 

All of this makes the end result that 
much more stunning. It's a seamless 
wash of ever- changing color, a work of art 



The Mustang's red and yellow candy paint 
gleamed like the neon lights of Vegas. 

About that paint: It didn't come easy. 
As Hal Haley, Netcong's most experienced 
body man tells it, "That finish was 



According to Haley, Dupli-Color's paint 
formulations, offered under a brand known 
as Paint Shop, helped. The whole system is 
designed to be used right out of the can. 
"I've done custom paint jobs that took 



miserable. It was a blend of candy [sparkle] six months of work," he says, "spraying over 



shades, and blending candies into candies 



and over again until you get to a show- 



is always difficult. The Camaro's paint took quality finish. Some go as much as a whole 



Gumout Regane Fuel 
System Cleaner was 
added to keep our 
engine running clean 
amidst the harsh 
elements of the desert 






us four days; this took almost four weeks. 



year if you're laying one color over the 





orldP'igs 



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WITH 





ONE HCCE AT A TIME, NO BLUEPRINT, 

You strip, cut; fit, and weld. Sifting through raw parts, you spend days hunting for 
that next unpolished piece that feels true to the bare-bones spirit of two wheels. 
After a year of late nights, grease-stained shirts, and bloody knuckles, it becomes 
more than a killer assembly of classic steel parts. It's a reflection of who you are. 
And the first time you fire it up, you feel like you'll ride it forever. 



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SPECIAL ADVERTISING SECTION »»»»»»»»» 



next and the next. The Dupli- Color helped 
because it's a more user-friendly paint. It's 
premixed, and it has a very heavy pigment 
content that cuts down on blotching. Paint 
is never easy to lay because temperature 
and humidity changes everything, but the 
Dupli-Color system helped us immensely." 

Performance Red, Chrome Yellow, 
Hugger Orange, and a mix of red and 



leisurely walk around town followed, the 
hotel's massive rooftop spotlight (it's bright 
enough to be seen from space) guiding us 
home at the end of the night. After a quick 
check on the Mustang, safe and warm in 
the parking garage, we hit the hay. 

The next morning offered one of those 
crisp western sunrises where the sky glows 
with color. The Ford burbled its way onto 



orange candies over a silver base: Under the the highway, warming up and grumbling 



desert sun, the Mustang's finish doesn't 
look like paint. It looks like magic. 




After a quick cruise up and down 
the Strip, we settled into our room and 
began planning the first night. The first 
stop would be the Luxor's illusion show, a 
mystical, out-there experience put on by 
magician Criss Angel. Angel was recently 
named Magician of the Century by a panel 
of industry experts, and his Vegas show, a 



at the approaching dawn. Vegas sits in the 
middle of one of the nation's most amazing 

deserts, almost all of which 
is undisturbed and beautiful 
Since we weren't gifted with 
a lot of time, we wanted to 
see that beauty first-hand. 
We cranked the taps on the 
5.0-liter, the BBK headers 
and Borla exhaust singing, 
and roared off to the west. 
The highway revealed 
a few things about the 
Mustang's personality. As 
project cars go, our goals 
with the Ford were unique: 
When we briefed Netcong 
on the project, we asked for 
speed with comfort and flash with style. 
Those are seemingly conflicting goals, but 
we didn't want to put the spotlight on 
an easy job. We wanted to see our shops 
respond to a challenge. 

The end result was impressive. The 
Mustang's suspension, a carefully selected 
combination of aggressive Cooper Zeon 



sense-defying experience dubbed Believe, is RS3-A tires, Bilstein shocks, lowering 



a must-see. Its illusions can't be described, 
but here's an effort anyway: A troupe of 
dancing bunnies. Disappearing everything. 
Legless wonder. And reformed skeptics. 
We followed our stint at Believe with 



springs and S tee da heavy-duty sway 
bars, offers a well-rounded alternative 
to the typical one-trick-pony chassis. It's 
firm without being harsh, capable but 
compliant. Combined with our relatively 



TOP SHOP 

TIPJVqOU* 






a glide into one of the Luxor's many bars. A stock engine — an AEM cold-air intake, 



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If you accidentally 
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and water. 



BROUGHT TQ YOU BY: 

COOPER LIGHTING 




orldJTigs 



COOPER TIRE 



coopertire.com 



The Cooper Zeon RS3 is specially designed 
to accentuate the high horsepower and 
extreme handling capabilities of today's 



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our 412-hp Mustang. The RS3-A all-season 
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of the finest scenery in the west. 



injection retune were chosen in the interest Knobby mountains jut out of the 
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Performance oil and Gumout's Regane Fuel 
System Cleaner were chosen to maximize 
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and brushy carpet on the desert floor. 
The long, slow march of prehistory 
is painted across the jagged canyon 



suspension changes make for a long-legged walls like so much universal graffiti. 



machine that can still burn rubber when 
necessary. Tickle the throttle with your 
right foot, the Ford leaps forward. Dive 
into a corner, and the suspension takes a 
reassuring, early set, even with a trailer 
attached. The miles disappeared. 

Our first stop was Red Rock Canyon 
National Conservation Area, just off state 
highway 159 on the west side of town. Red 
Rock is fifteen minutes from downtown 
Vegas, but given what it looks like, it may 
as well be on the far side of the moon. The 
area's 195,000 acres encompass some 



Calling Red Rock a nature lover's 
paradise might be an understatement. 
Aztec sandstone peaks hide countless 
hiking and climbing trails, off-road driving 
areas and epic waterfalls. We slid the 
Mustang to a halt and set up camp in a 
clean government campground on a nearby 
plateau. Campsite prices vary, but figure on 
no more than $15 or so for a decent spot. 
Despite a laid-back feel, the campground 
claims to have served over 500,000 people 
since 1999. Our spot, on a deserted hill in 
the back, felt wonderfully remote. 








The Mustang's trunk lid 
houses a Vizio monitor, 
a Playstation 3, and 
a host of camping 
accessories. As the sun 
set, we cracked a few 
beverages and relaxed 
by the screen's light. 





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Naturalist John Muir once said that, 
by tugging on any single thing in nature, 
you can find it attached to the rest of the 
world. Those poignant words are etched 
into a wall at the Red Rock visitors 
center, and they reminded us that road 
trips encompass more than just highways. 
Convertible or no, we needed to get closer 
to the scenery. After scouting the area, we 
unloaded the Victory. 

Red Rock is easily accessible by car, 
but it's best seen — and smelled, and 



We spent the afternoon leisurely 
cruising through the area while 
contemplating our next move. It proved to 
be a relaxed evening and a starlit dinner at 
our campground. It was then that we took a 
hard look at our Mustang's interior. 

Creative Auto Interiors of Butler, New 
Jersey does a lot of work for luxury-car 
dealers in the New York area, but their 
passion is interior design. We gave them 
a free hand with the Ford, delivering an 
empty shell without a convertible top. As 



felt — by motorcycle. The Hammer's lumpy, we mentioned last month, Rodger Pisani, 



basso exhaust note punched through the 
desert air easily, ripping out across the 
countryside and echoing through the hills. 
Rollin' Fast delivered an excellent piece: 
The Hammer's Dupli-Color paint, color- 
matched to the Mustang, was paired with 
a full fairing, a custom Kicker stereo, and 
color-matched hard saddlebags. The bags 
hold the stereo's amplifier, and a custom- 
built king-and-queen seat turns the 
Hammer into a machine suitable for two. 



Creative's main brain, loves a challenge. 
He took to the car like a duck to water, 
chalking out designs on bare fabric 
and dreaming up ways to make it more 
comfortable on the road. 

The combination that resulted is 
as attractive as it is intense. The factory 
dash and door panels have been covered 
with crocodile-pattern red inserts, the 
remaining interior plastics spray-dyed to 
match. Custom red carpeting is matched 















TOP SHOP 

TIPJYQ05** 



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BROUGHTTQYDUBY: 

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Our Mustang's interior was 
completely reupholstered. 
It includes custom-paneled 
seats and a video monitor 
built into the dash. The 
5.0-liter V-8 under the 
hood received upgrades 
including an AEM Cold Air 
Induction System. 





to repaneled, recovered tan seats; the latter 
offers a more cohesive appearance than the 
stock seats while remaining comfortable. A 
video monitor and navigation system is 
integrated into the dash, replacing the center 
A/C vents, and glossy tigerwood veneer 
brightens up the interior's flat surfaces. A 
custom LED shift knob lights up according 
to what gear the six-speed transmission is 
in, and a Kicker upgrade system — a plug- 
and-play solution that includes everything 
from connectors to speakers — is hidden 
throughout the interior. There's also a trunk- 
mounted sub woofer. 

Still, the best part is behind the two 
front seats. Pisani yanked the Ford's rear 
bench and seatbelt-anchor towers, installing 
a custom-built bulkhead that houses a 
microwave, a small coffeemaker, a cooler, and 
a storage bin for camping gear. As he tells 
it, the idea was to create a mobile campsite 
so you wouldn't have to stop for things 
like coffee on the road. It makes sense, it's 
practical, and it works. 

Naturally, Pisani couldn't stop there. 
The Mustang's trunk is a treasure trove of 
goodies, from the 22-inch Vizio LCD monitor 
in the lid to the Sony Playstation 3 and 
wireless speaker system hidden in the rest 
of the compartment. Custom folding chairs, 
upholstered to match the seats, live there; 
a Stanley custom toolbox fits between the 
wheel wells. 

There's also storage for a portable grill, a 
tent and a DirecTV receiver. 

Suitably overwhelmed, we spent the rest 
of the night chilling out by the light of the 
Ford's trunk-mounted video system. Who 
says camping has to be rustic? 

The next morning saw the Hammer S 
back on the trailer and our party restless. 
Our female traveler wanted to see the human 
half of Nevada's history, and so we left our 



WorldMags 

SPECIAL ADVERTISING SECTION »»»»»»») 



»» 

The Ford's seat pattern 

mirrors that of the 

stock car but has been 

tweaked for a more 

pleasing appearance. 

The rear-seat console 

holds a coffeemaker 

and microwave. 





campsite at full bore, circling 
around to the city's east 
side on little-traveled state 
highways. Most of the land 



Rodger Pisani and 

his crew integrated 

a Playstation 3, 

stereo subwoofer, 

and Stanley custom 

storage unit 

into the trunk's 

capacious depths. 



quickly grew twisty, but the Victory was 
strapped down tight, so we went for it. 

Most of southern Nevada is 
protected government land, dutifully 
overseen by the Bureau of Land 
Management. There are pockets of citizen 
space here and there, but if you find a 
privately owned house, it's likely owned 
by the government and leased out long- 
term. The juxtaposition of natural canvas 
and private construction is an odd one, 
especially in Nelson. 

Nelson is a dried-up mining town that was 
a once-thriving village. But two minutes past its 
limits on 165 lies Eldorado Canyon Mine Tours, a 



was barren, and once we left the city limits, few 

other cars were seen. No speed limits were broken, rambling, family-run business set in the world's 

because that would be wrong. (That's our story, and most charming scrap yard. Eldorado Canyon is built 



we're sticking to it.) 



around a dead — not tapped out, just unsafe — gold 



Nearing Hoover Dam, we ran smack into state and silver mine from the 1860s, and the company's 



highway 95, which pops out of the south side of 
Henderson, Nevada, and beelines for the California 
border. It's a great place to test a car's legs, but that 
wasn't what we were after. We took the first major 
side road we came across, which happened to be 
state route 165 toward Nelson, Nevada. The road 



chief offering is an in-depth look at the blood and 
guts that built the American West. 

Bobbie Werly owns the business with her 
husband, Tony. They moved to Nelson from the Las 
Vegas suburbs 17 years ago, purchasing the mine 
as a base for kayak tours on the nearby Colorado 



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COSTS THE FUST TIME YOU USE IT! 

These tough times are taking money out of your 
pocket, so why not put a bunch back in? A Haynes 
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WorldMags 

SPECIAL ADVERTISING SECTION »»»»»»»»» 



River. After digging out the mine's entrance isn't always pretty. 



with their children, they tapped into a rich 
vein of the area's history — the original 



"Over two dozen murders happened on 
these grounds in the 1800s," Bobbie says. 



shafts were still present, as was much of the "The mine brought hundreds of people to the 



area's legacy. Modern tours run hundreds 
of feet deep into the earth and let tourists 
experience an authentic part of the Old 
West. Years of research and investigation, 
however, reminded the Werlys that history 



area, and the house we're living in used to 
be the miners' commissary. This was Indian 
territory, a land of claim jumping and 
bloodshed. It was a bad place." 

Like most abandoned mines, the 




Werlys' property is spooky and intriguing. 
It's also charmingly ramshackle. A massive 
antiques collection dots the grounds; 
ancient Chevrolets and engineless Willys 
trucks fill the gaps between buildings. The 
Mustang's exhaust echoed off sun-dried 
wood and century-old mining equipment. 
The government land in the background, 



thousands of acres of unspoiled glory, 
begged us to sit and gawp. 

But the Mustang burbled, its candy 
paint flickering in the sunlight. The Victory 
suddenly seemed nervous and cooped up on 
the trailer. It was time to go, so we climbed 
back on the road. 

As the day creeped into afternoon, the 



If you had a fast car, 
a faster motorcycle, 
and an open dry 
lakebed, would you 
go tearing across 
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3 magnets for 
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The new Might-D-Light™ Mini's innovative design features 2 bright white LEDs and 
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Our Victory Hammer's 

custom Kicker stereo 

and large fairing made 

highway travel a breeze. 



ride back to Vegas seemed too short. A 
dry lakebed appeared on the left, and we 
impulsively turned onto it. The Victory 
found its way off the trailer, its wakened 
V-twin coughing and stirring up sticky 
plumes of dust. Our female traveler fired 



in the Ford's trunk. After cleaning the car 
at a nearby truck stop, we took a leisurely 
return to Las Vegas. 

The last stop on our trip came about 
purely by accident — wanting to escape the 
Strip and see more of Vegass old-world 
history, we took advantage of the waning 



up the Mustang, cranking the Kicker stereo light and hit up the city's historic north side 
through the roof. After a quick check to 



make sure the engine's flood levels were 
stable, she dumped the clutch, tearing off 
toward the horizon. Fifteen minutes later, 



It's there that we stumbled onto the world- 
famous Neon Museum. 

Las Vegas is notoriously cannibalistic, 
consuming businesses and people that 



after running the Hammer at full tilt across can't hack it in the city's harsh economy. 



a slick lakebed and living to tell the tale, we 
dropped a boot and came to a halt. 

Bike: surprisingly stable and quiet 
at speed. Mustang: surprisingly loud and 
raunchy. Both vehicles: filthy. And we didn't to preserving that history. It's a treasure 
have a care in the world. It helped that both trove of more than 150 full-size neon and 



Hotels come and go on a regular basis, and 
there are few remnants of the town's early 
gambling history. The Neon Museum is a 
501(c)(3) non-profit organization dedicated 



the Ford and motorcycle were covered by 



incandescent signs from the 1950s, '60s, 



policies from Progressive Insurance. We had and '70s. The names there are fascinating, 



a frozen directory of iconic places like the 
Stardust and Golden Nugget. You walk 
among giants, rusted steel and faded paint 
Luckily, we had the foresight to stash a watching your every footstep. It's a hard 
bag of Mothers polishes, cleaners and waxes place to visit — the turnover and march of 



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dirt from fouling moving 
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but every little bit helps. 



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WorldMags 

SPECIAL ADVERTISING SECTION »»»»»»»»» 




progress is more than a little sad — and an even 
harder place to leave. 

But leave we did. Thoroughly worn out, we 
headed back to our campsite at Red Rock and 
collapsed. As the sun set over the hills, we prepped 
for the trip home with a cup of coffee, grilled 
food, and a movie on the in-trunk Playstation. A 
Cooper Might-D-Light folding LED work light, 
thoughtfully left in the trunk by the guys at 
Netcong, helped illuminate the evening. Exhausted 
and ready to return to real life, we finally clicked 
the light off and settled in under the moonlight, 
the Ford's exhaust ticking as it cooled. 

All in all, we packed a lot into a short amount 
of time, and our shops built the perfect two 
vehicles to do it with. "Ultimate" is a loaded word, 
and getaways are what you make them, but as 
weekends go, it doesn't get much better than this. 



Like what you see and want more? Check out 
pmtopshop.com for extended project coverage, in-depth 

videos of the build, the trip and other cool extras. 



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Sweepstakes Rules: No purchase necessary to enter or win. The 2011 Pop Mech Top Shop Sweepstakes, sponsored by Hearst 
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Drivers Ed 

THE PRICE OF FINISH NAILERS IS 

DROPPING WHILE THEIR 

BENEFITS ARE INCREASING. WE 

TEST 10 TO LEARN WHICH IS 

THE SLICKEST SHOOTER. 

BY ROY BERENDSOHN 



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© Why use a pneumatic finish nailer when a hammer 
will do? Speed. A pneumatic nailer allows you to position 
aworkpiecewith one hand and fire a finish nail into it with 
the other. Pros love the way these tools can speed a job 
along, but the DIY crowd likes them, too. To a time-starved 
homeowner racing to complete a project, a finish nailer 
can mean getting it done that weekend rather than seeing 
the work drag on and on. We gathered 10 of the newest 
15-gauge nailers— tools that can fire a nail up to 2>£ 
inches long in the blink of an eye. Better still, they drive a 
nail without need of a pilot hole and pose little risk of split- 
ting the wood. We tested them in every common building 
material— including a 3-inch-thick red oak block. All the 
tools drove a nail with a vengeance, but the best were 
easy to use, incorporating features like a worklight or a 
belt hook. And if the occasional nail jammed in the nose, it 
was easy to clear. Here's what we found. 



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PHOTOGRAPH BY PHILIP FRIEDMAN 

- M a « ._ 



> WorldMags 



POPULARMECHANICS.COM | JUNE 2011 




WorldMags 



PM DIY HOME 
15-GAUGE 
NAIL GUNS 




PRICE: 



WEIGHT: 



NAIL SIZE: 



$450 
4.1 pounds 
1W-2W 



Likes: The Bosch is 
easy to load and easy 
to handle. It's a 
well-balanced tool, and 
the rubberized handle 
ensures a good grip, no 
small benefit when 
you're hunched down 
nailing trim or standing 
on a ladder firing into 
crown molding. And the 
drive-depth adjustment 
is simple: a ridged 
cylinder near the nose 
that you turn. 
Dislikes: When it came 
time to drive the 
23^-inch-long fasteners 
into red oak, we found 
that the gun did not 
countersink them as 
reliably as the other 
nailers. The spring- 
loaded mechanism to 
clearjammed nails from 
the nose is a ridicu- 
lously stiff contraption. 



PRICE: 



WEIGHT: 



MAIL SIZE: 



$180 

1 4.1 pounds 
VA"-2Vz 



. 



Likes: This tool defines 
what a finish nailer can 
be through excellent 
industrial design and 
nail-driving punch. The 
LED worklight is 
convenient, varied nose 
tips suit most molding 
profiles, and a 
pushbutton air nozzle 
clears the workpiece of 
dirt and debris. The 
designers included a 
fold-out hook that, 
combined with the 
gun's length, marks out 
16-inch centers. It was 
the only nailer to have 
done away with the 
rotating exhaust port. 
Instead, it routes 
exhaust through a baffle 
at the rear of the 
handle, keeping the air 
clear of your face. 
Dislikes: Nothing 
noted. 



PRICE: 



WEIGHT: 



NAIL SIZE: 



$147 
5.5 pounds 
V-lVz 



Likes: A finish nailer 
should be easy to load 
and fire, and be able to 
clear the occasional 
jammed nail. The CH 
nailer succeeds on all 
counts— and you have 
to wonder why more 
expensive products 
don't have features like 
its clearly marked 
pushbutton that 
switches the tool back 
and forth from 
sequential to bump fire. 
We also appreciated 
the CH's low-nail 

indicator light. 
Dislikes: We found 
that the tool's onboard 
stud finder didn't work 
reliably enough to be of 
real benefit. We also 
don't see the need for a 
laser pointer, and the 
rubber nosepiece, held 
to the tool with a tether, 
is clumsy. 



PRICE: 



WEIGHT: 



NAIL SIZE: 



$80 
4.8 pounds 
W-2W 



Likes: If you've been 
holding back on 
purchasing a finish 
nailer because of price, 
wait no longer. I'll admit 
we looked askance at 
this budget-priced 
tool— until we loaded it 
with 234-inch nails and 
fired one after another 
into our red oak test 
block. Ninety percent of 
the nails were perfectly 
countersunk to a depth 
that would accept 
putty. The tool is so 
simple, there's really 
not much else to say. 
Dislikes: Yes, this tool 
is inexpensive, but its 
spring-loaded latch for 
clearing jammed nails is 
so unyielding, we wish 
the manufacturer had 
invested a few extra 
design dollars to 
improve it. 



PRICE: 



WEIGHT: 



NAIL SIZE: 



$150 
4.4 pounds 
VA n -2Vz 



Likes: If there's one 
thing that we've learned 
from testing tools over 
the past 20 years, it's 
that basic is good. Too 
often, manufacturers 
fumble the design ball 
when they start adding 
features. Not Crafts- 
man. This nailer has 
been shorn of 
unnecessary ele- 
ments— it's just happy 
to drive a nail of any 
size into any material. 
We particularly 
appreciated the 
flip-open nose 
compartment: Clearing 
stuck nails takes only 
a moment. 
Dislikes: We're 
nit-picking here, but the 
adjustable exhaust 
deflector is slippery, 
and the depth- 
adjustment wheel 
needs to be larger. 




124 JUNE 2011 | POPULARMECHANICS.COM 



> WorldMags 



PHOTOGRAPHS BY STUART TYSON 



WorldMags 




7k 




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DEWALT 


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PORTER-CABLE 


RIDGID 


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DA250C 


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FINISHPRO 42XP 
















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IVJaiflilB 3.9 pounds 


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Likes: We've come to 


Likes: Power tools 


Likes: Lightweight, 


Likes: One thi ng ou r 


Likes: The Senco is a 


1 respect DeWalt tools in 


should be equipped 


solid, uncomplicated— 


tests have revealed 


finish nailer of the old 


1 our tests. They're a 


with useful features, 


that's the Porter-Cable 


about Ridgid tools is 


school, with heavy, 


1 sturdy, reliable breed. So 


not bells and whistles, 


nailer. You can easily 


that they tend to be 


robust construction and 


1 it is with this feather- 


as the Hitachi 


spin its exhaust air vent 


fast-handling. In this 


a hearty kerthunk sound 


1 weight product. It loads 


successfully shows. 


to direct the air out of 


case, the molded grip 


as it perfectly 


1 and unloads easily, and 


Press the button at the 


the way, and the plastic 


on the Ridgid is 


countersinks one nail 


1 it packs a pu nch. We 


tool's back to activate 


magazine is so slippery 


slip-resistant, and in 


after another into red 


1 also appreciate the 


the blow nozzle and 


that the nails slide in 


cross section it's wider 


oak. Of all the tools 


1 common-sense graphic 


sweep the workpiece 


and out as if the contact 


at the back than it is at 


equipped with a 


1 by the trigger that spells 


clean with a burst of 


surfaces were covered 


the front. Those 


spring-loaded latch to 


1 out which way to tu rn 


compressed air. A 


in ice. 


features combine with 


clear jammed nails, it 


1 the drive-depth 


simple and comfortable 


Dislikes: " D o wn ri g ht 


the tool's light weight 


was the only one that 


1 adjustment; that saved 


spring-loaded lever 


annoying" is how one 


and good balance to 


could be easily flipped 


1 us some fiddling as we 


toggles the tool back 


tester described the 


make it quick on the 


open and closed. We 


1 moved from one task to 


and forth from 


sharp-edged belt hook, 


draw. We also liked the 


also appreciated the 


1 the next. 


sequential to bump fire, 


which is too long and 


nice, big thumb latch on 


rugged nail magazine, 


1 Dislikes: We didn't 


and the exhaust port at 


catches on your hand. 


the nail pusher. It 


for those times when 


1 much care for the 


the back of the tool is 


We also didn't care for 


certainly makes loading 


you reach down and 


1 trigger— you have to 


easy to turn to direct 


the fact that you have 


nails easier. 


pick up the tool by that, 


1 change it to convert 


the flow away from 


to swap the trigger 


Dislikes: Why the 


not the handle. 


1 from sequential to 


your face. 


to convert the tool 


designer overlooked the 


Dislikes: We prefer a 


1 bump fire. The 


Dislikes: The Hitachi is 


to bump fire; it just 


latch to clear jammed 


simple button or latch 


1 spring-loaded latch to 


among those tools with 


seems unnecessary. 


nails we don't know. It's 


to switch the tool from 


1 clear jammed nails is 


an awkward lever- 




resistant and clunky. 


sequential to bump fire. 


1 painfully stiff. 


activated latch for 




1 


The Senco requires you 






clearingjammed nails. 




i 


to change the trigger. 




$ WorldMags 



POPULARMECHANICS.COM 



JUNE 2011 125 




WorldMags 



Power-Washing 



Either I'm doing something wrong or 
my electric pressure washer doesn't 
cut it. I pressure-wash my house 
every summer to remove dirt and mildew, but the results are 
less than sparkling. Can you tell me how to do this so I'm not 
wasting my time? 

Until they gain some experience with a pressure washer, homeowners tend to 
look upon one of these machines as if it were a magic wand. Wave it over your 

house, car, truck, boat or tractor and, presto, it's clean. As usual, the truth is a bit 

more complicated and subtle than that. 




Pressure washers do live up to their 
billing in that they are incredibly produc- 
tive and water-conserving. But as with 
any other piece of outdoor power equip- 
ment, you have to select the right 
machine, then use it correctly. 

First, unless you have a very small 
house (or a house that s not particularly 
dirty), it's likely that an electric machine 
is not powerful enough to do the job. 
These machines are better suited to 
cleaning cars, small boats and patio 
furniture. Pressure-washer capacity is 
measured in cleaning units— the product 
of water pressure (in psi, or pounds per 
square inch) multiplied by flow rate (in 
gpm, or gallons per minute). An electric 
pressure washer may operate at 2400 
cleaning units; a homeowner-grade gas 
engine model can get up to 6210 clean- 
ing units, and professional machines can 
hit 16,000 cleaning units (4000 psi and 
4 gpm). Cleaning units translate directly 
into effectiveness. 




126 JUNE 2011 | 

V WorldMags 



POPULARMECHANICS.COM 



PHOTOGRAPHS BYANJA HITZENBERGER 



WorldMags 



AMERICA'S GOLD AUTHORITY. 



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WorldMags 




DIY SAFETY 



CLEAN IS GOOD, INJURY BAD 




Take steps to 
* avoid injury 
and damage while 

pressure washing. 

WATER AND 
ELECTRICITY 

DON'T MIX 

You're going to get 
wet when pressure 
washing, and that 
puts you at risk of 
receiving an 
electrical shock 
from wires and 

exterior outlets. 
Look overhead to 
check for power 
lines before placing 
or extending 
ladders. Avoid blast 
ing the house's 
electrical 
service-entrance 



cable, the electrical 
meter, exterior 
outlets and exterior 
lights. 

STAND FIRM 

Position the ladder 
on a firm footing at 
the proper angle 
(about 75 to 78 

degrees). To assess 

the angle, place the 
toe of your boot 
against the ladder's 
base. With your 

arms straight out, 
you should be able 
to rest your hands 
on the rung in front 
of you (usually the 
fifth rung). 

Obviously, the 
most dangerous 



part of this work is 
operating a 
pressure washer 
with two hands 
while standing on a 
ladder. If you're at 
all uncomfortable 
with ladder work, 
hire a professional. 
Otherwise, take 
your time, lean 
against the ladder, 
and stop if you feel 
uneasy. 

DO NO HARM 

Try a pressure 
nozzle with a wider 
fan pattern before 
resorting to one 
with a narrower 
pattern. Yellow 
nozzles spray at a 
fan pattern of 15 



WHAT EOQELKONEED NEED 



degrees, green at 
25 degrees, and 
white at 40 
degrees. Reserve 
the red nozzle 
(0 degrees) for 
unusual applica- 
tions like stripping 

off hardened mud. 
Keep the nozzle 
moving, and hold it 
the recommended 
distance from the 
surface. Finally, 
avoid blasting 

water upward at a 

steep angle under 
siding. Also, don't 

blast directly into 
corners, under the 
edge of windows 
and doors or into 
dryer or attic vents 




Aside from a pressure washer [A], you need other gear. Mix cleaning solutions in 
5-gallon buckets [B]. House wash [C] is a cleaner formulated specifically for 
pressure washers. Reserve general household cleaners and chemicals for cleaning 
by hand; bleach, for example, can damage a pressure washer's pump. Mix Jomax 
mildewcide, bleach [ D ] and water for treating severe mildew. Pour the mildewcide 
solution into a pump garden sprayer [ E] and apply it, scrub and rinse. Work with a 
fiberglass extension pole and soft siding brush [F] to scrub anything that can't be 
sprayed, such as louvered dryer vents. Don't guess: Use a measuring cup to 
mix cleaners. Use a stiff deck brush [ H ] for tough scrubbing jobs. 




PM DIY HOME 
HOMEOWNERS CLINIC Q + A 



So, let's say you spring for a gas 
engine machine. Will that solve your 
problems? It's likely to help, but I 
wouldn't count on the machine alone to 
do a really thorough job. I find that I get 
the best results when I use a pressure 
washer in conjunction with hand tools. 

If the mildew is not severe, pressure 
washing alone will do the trick. But if it's 
bad, I pretreatthe mildew-stained areas 
using nothing more than a pump garden 
sprayer loaded with a solution of liquid 
bleach, Jomax mildewcide and water. 
I spray this on, scrub, rinse and then 
pressure-wash with a multipurpose 
siding cleaner. It leaves an immaculate, 
streak-free surface. And when I use the 
pressure washer, I've had better results 
washing from the bottom up and rins- 
ing from the top down (see "Clean Is 
Good, Injury Bad"). Professional contrac- 
tors—who move a lot faster than I do 
and often work in squads— wash and 
rinse from the top down. Since I'm not a 
professional, my goal is to take my time, there's not much you can do to prevent 



They're a tough adversary at the 
residential level and agriculturally Worse, 
they're resistant to many pesticides, 
according to George Hamilton, professor 
of entomology at New Jersey's Rutgers 
University, who studies the bugs. "You 
spray them [with insecticide], they look 
like they're dead, and then they come 
back in 48 hours," he says. 

Rather than blanketing your house 
and grounds with insecticide, Hamilton 
recommends first doing everything you 
can to seal up entry points. Many home- 
owners have found the bugs pouring in 
through window air conditioners. These 
appliances are often inadequately sealed 
to the window opening, and the bugs 
often manage to enter through the 
machine itself. You can use weatherstrip- 
ping to seal around the appliance, but 



work safely and get the house clean 
enough so that it won't need to be done 
again for at least another year, and 
maybe longer. 

Bug House 

Our house and yard became infested 
last spring with bugs. (We call them 
stink bugs, but I'm not sure what their 
real name is.) They stayed with us all 
summer and came inside in the fall. It 
was awful. Please tell me how I can 
prevent this from happening again. 

Bugs are on the march. Bedbugs are 
infesting cities, emerald ash borers 
are decimating trees in the Great Lakes 
region, and cutworms are laying waste 
to crops in the Corn Belt. And don't 
even get me started on deer ticks. I 
came back from a chain saw test last 
spring with one that took a doctor and 
a scalpel to remove. 



the bugs from coming right through it. 

Other entry points are torn window 
screens and the space beneath dam- 
aged weatherstripping on the bottom 
edge of doors and windows. These 
insects can also squirm through gaps in 
siding or trim and the openings around 
electrical boxes or hose bibs that are 
mounted to the siding. 

You can use a variety of materials to 
seal these openings: Thum-Gum (a 
weather-resistant putty popular with 
electricians and telecommunications 
technicians), caulk and spray foam sea 
ant applied inside the house. 

If you have to turn to pesticides as a 
last resort, Hamilton and his colleagues 
have found a handful of outdoor sprays 
to be effective. Use products containing 
B-cyfluthrin, cyfluthrin, deltamethrin 
andA-cyhalothrin. 



And then there are the stink bugs Runaway Runoff 



you mention. Taking their name from 
the bad smell they emit when crushed, 
these shield-shaped bugs are not a 
single type, but a group. They've popu- 
lated the mid-Atlantic region and are 
moving west. Urban myths are already 
circulating. No, their odor does not 
attract other stink bugs, and although 
some types arrived from Asia, others 
are North American natives. 



Where we live in Florida, water runs 
down through the backyard and along 
and under the driveway. Then it comes 
out at the front of the house, under a 
sidewalk. How do we stop this runoff, 
and how do we plug the undermined 
areas beneath the walk and driveway 
to keep them from collapsing? 

That's pretty serious runoff. When it's 
that bad, you need a multilayered 




$ WorldMags 




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ou never Know whic 
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Good thing Bobcat® attach- 
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WorldMags 




PM DIY HOME 
HOMEOWNERS CLINIC Q + A 



approach. If this is a recent phenome- 
non, check that the runoff is not coming 
from nearby construction (say, a parking 
lot that's at a higher elevation than your 
yard). If you find this, notify the town. 

That brings me to the multilayered 
solution, which involves some earth- 
moving and landscaping. Before you 
begin this work, though, notify the 
state's One Call excavation alert sys- 
tem. Utility-marking companies will 
then come out and identify where 
underground utilities cross or enter 
your property. The last thing you need is 
to hit an underground gas line with a 
rented backhoe. 

When dealing with runoff, remem- 
ber the acronym DIG, which stands for 
"divert, intercept, grade." 

Berms (small ridges) and 
swales (small, shallow ditches) can 
direct surface water away from a house 
or paved surface. Both can be gracefully 
shaped to steer water where it needs to 
go, and both can be planted to blend 
into the landscape and improve their 
ability to absorb water. 



INTERCEPT 



French drains (essentially 
gravel-filled trenches with perforated 
pipes at the bottom) can absorb surface 
water and allow it to percolate into the 
ground; dry wells can do the same for 
water discharging from downspouts. 
-' J =*■ Broad areas need to be con- 



DIVERT: 




toured so that the house sits on high 
ground and surface water can move 
around it. 



about my concerns, he said that the 
gas hose is flexible, so it can make a 
bend like that. Should I be concerned? 

Yes. A change in the gas line's direction 
is supposed to be accomplished with 
steel elbows, not by bending the flexi- 
ble gas line— which is flexible only for 
the purpose of absorbing vibration. The 
generator's installation instructions 
probably spell this out. Report the prob- 
lem to the manufacturer, ask for the 
installation instructions, present these 
to the contractor, and request that he 
redo the connection. 

Dirty Dishwasher 

Our house has hard water that is 
clogging and ruining our dishwasher. 
We're on our second dishwasher in 
five years. Often the dishes are barely 
clean or need to be washed again. We 
don't want to install a whole-house 
water softener. Is there another 
solution? 

If you're worried about introducing salt 
into the home's water, connect the 
water softener to the water heater only. 
This will prolong the life of both the 
water heater and the appliances down- 
stream from it, such as your dishwasher. 
It will also solve the problem of intro- 
ducing softened water to the house's 
entire water supply, including drinking 
water. If you don't want to install a 
water softener because it takes up too 
much space, there are compact water 
softeners, some of them not much 
bigger than a large waste basket. 

Off the Wall 

I live in an old house, and I applied one 



While you're doing this corrective of those basement-wall coatings to 



andscaping, consider putting in a rain 
garden, a landscaped area planted spe- 
cifically to absorb runoff. 

After getting the runoff under con- 
trol, contact a grout-pumping or slab- 
jacking company to see if it can fill the 
undermined areas below the driveway 
and sidewalk. 

Sinister Bend 

We just had a standby generator 
installed. The contractor connected 
the gas line to the generator with a 
flexible hose that has a sharp bend. 
The hose isn't kinked, but it looks 
suspicious. When I spoke to him 



my brick foundation. At first, it really 
made the basement look good, but 
now it's peeling like crazy. This is more 
than I bargained for. Should I scrape it 
off and start all over? 

No. Let the coating peel off, or assist it 
with some stripper. Then leave well 
enough alone. 

Old brick-and-mortar foundations are 
lousy surfaces to receive a coating. Their 
walls wick moisture from adjacent soil, 
as do their footings from the ground 
below (a condition called rising damp). 
Then there's a century's worth of min- 
eral salts, mildew, coal dust (and good- 
ness knows what else) sticking to the 



brick. All conspire to keep even the best 
coating from properly adhering. 

Tattered Threads 

I was working on a small electrical 
project a few weeks ago, and the 
screws that came with the light fixture 
were too long. They kept bumping into 
wires in the box. I tried to cut the 
screws shorter with a hacksaw, and it 
drove me nuts. I ruined the screws and 
had to drive back to the hardware 
store to get shorter ones. How do you 
cut screws to length, especially such 
small ones? 

Small screws are best cut to length 
with an electrician's wire-stripping tool. 
The better varieties of these tools have 
an arc-shaped series of holesjust below 
their jaws. You'll see that the holes are 
designated by common electrical screw 
sizes: 10-24, 4-40 and so forth. Thread 
the screw into the hole, then shear it to 
the correct length. 

Thread the screw back and forth 
through the cutting hole a couple of 
times to smooth any rough edges. Each 
hole also functions as a thread-repair 
die. You can use it to clean up a small 
screw that is a little rusty or has paint on 
it. Put a drop of lubricant into the 
screw-cutting hole before you do this — 
it'll make the screw easier to turn, and it 
will keep the junk on the screw from 
damaging the tool. 

Screw-cutting and repair are only 
half the battle here; the other half is 
repairing a screw hole. Every electrical 
kit should include a tool called a triple 
tap to deal with holes that are rusty, 
damaged or clogged with paint, dirt or 
drywall compound. The triple tap looks 
like a screwdriver, but its shaft is 
threaded, much like the tool you would 
use when you cut threads in a hole 
you just drilled. The tool's shaft is 
stepped to tap three different sizes of 
holes, hence its name. pm 



©Got a home-maintenance or 
repair problem? Ask Roy 

about it. Send your questions to 
pmhomedinic@fhearst.com or to 
Homeowners Clinic, Popular Mechan- 
ics, 300 W. 57th St., New York, NY 
10019-5899. While we cannot 
answer questions individually, prob- 
lems of general interest will be 
discussed in the column. 




$ WorldMags 



WorldMags 




of incredibly sharp edges! 



For a store near you, call: 



© 201 1 EdgeCraft Corp, 



800-342-3255 www.chefschoice.com 





WorldMags 



TIE ROD 



SPROCKET 



REAR 
AXLE 



BAND 
BRAKE 



+ ONE-DAY PROJECT 



Build a Go-Kart 

LARRY ERD HADN'T TOUCHED A WELDER SINCE SHOP CLASS-BUT THEN HIS SON ASKED IF THE TWO COULD 
BUILD A GO-KART TOGETHER. NEXT STOP: THE HARDWARE STORE. BY HARRY SAWYERS 



C/) 



Builder: 



■ 

Plans: 



arty Erd, 
pano Beach, Fla. 
~>pidercarts.com 
ack Widow" 
'689.15 



Cost: 




PLANS AND PARTS 

-> Erd and his 7-year-old son, 
Harrison, used $14.99 plans for 
the "Black Widow" go-kart from 
spidercarts.com. Plans like 
these, whether they are free or 
require a fee, often give frame 
dimensions but leave steering, 
axle, throttle and cable 
connections up to the builder. 
Browse parts suppliers' 
websites to find additional 
advice on materials and 
methods. "You're on your own, 
but that's the fun of it," Erd says. 




FRAME 

-> Use a hacksaw or chop saw to 
cut metal stock to length. Clamp 
the steel in a vise and file or 
grind the cut edges smooth. 
Using a MIG welder, tack 
together the parts to check for a 
good fit, and make final welds to 
complete the frame. 




STEERING 

■> Weld an upper steering block 
to the top of the kart's steering 
post. Weld the lower steering 
block to the front of the frame. 



Screw the steering wheel to the 
steering shaft and thread the 
shaft assembly through the 
upper and lower blocks. Bolt a 
pair of spherical rod ends to the 
steering arm at the bottom of 
the shaft, using nylock nuts. 

Weld spindle brackets to the 
front corners of the frame. Bolt 
the tie rods' opposite ends to the 
brackets' arms and connect the 
rods to both ends. Thread each 
bracket's stub axle into the front 
wheels' hubs. Mount the front 
tires on rims and bolt the rims to 



7) 
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> 



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> 




132 JUNE 2011 | P0PULARMECHANICS.COM 



> WorldMags 



LLUSTRATIONS BY VIC KULIHIN 



the hubs. Erd adjusted the 
positions of the steering shaft 
and tie rods until the steering 
performed properly. 




REAR AXLE 

■> Weld bearing hangers to the 
bottom face of the frame's 
10-inch rear legs. Center the 
sprocket, Uni-Hub and brake 
drum on the axle. Wedge 
bearings between a pair 
of bearing cassettes and use 
the hardware in a bearing kit to 
fasten the cassettes to both 
hangers. (Expect to adjust the 
axle parts again.) On the axle 
ends, mount wheel hubs, fit 
rear tires onto the rims and 
bolt the rims to the wheel hubs, 





ENGINE 

■> Buy accessories together 
with the engine to ensure 
compatibility. Weld a 
mounting plate to the rear cen- 
ter of the frame, and bolt the 
engine to it. Add a clutch to 
the engine crankshaft using 
set screws in the clutch hub. 
Slide the Uni-Hub along the 
axle to align the axle sprocket 
with the clutch sprocket. Weld 
a bent 3 /s-inch rod to the frame 
so it crosses in front of the 
brake drum to anchor the 
brake band. Tighten the set 
screws on the Uni-Hub, drum 
and bearings. 

Loop chain around both 
sprockets. Remove links to 
adjust the chain so it has 
Vz inch of play. 

CABLES 

-5 Attach brake and throttle 
cables to the left and right foot 
pedals. Lead cables to the rear 
and fasten the sheaths to the 
frame. Pull cables just to the 
point of tension. Use wire 
stops to pin the brake cable to 
the upper end of the brake 
band so that the band can 
cinch around the drum to 
arrest the axle's motion. Pin 
the throttle cable to the engine 
throttle in the idle position. 
Mount a kill switch; lead the 
cable to the engine. 

Start the engine with the 
kart on blocks to test the pedal 
connections. Erd added a 
floorboard so a driver wouldn't 
kick the tie rods (or the ground). 

Make a seat by stapling 
vinyl and foam cushioning to 
plywood. Bolt it, and a 
seatbelt, to the seat post and 
the frame. 

Harrison drives wearing a 
helmet, seatbelt fastened, 
while Erd supervises— and the 
boy has survived to see age 14. 



IdMags 






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STOCK PARTS 



1 2-inch steering wheel 

Steering shaft, arm; 
steering blocks 

13-inch tie rods (2); 
spherical rod ends (4) 

5 /8-inch left and right front 
spindle brackets 

14-inch balloon tires, rim 
and hub, front (2) 

Pedals, 60-inch brake an 
throttle cables, wire stops 

Seat; seatbelt 

14-inch balloon tires, rim 
and hub, rear (2) 

Bearing kits: hanger, two 
cassettes, bearing (2) 

4-inch brake drum and 
1-inch brake band 

1 x 36-inch rear axle 






FRAME METAL, DIMENSIONS 






Uni-Hub for 1-inch axle 
No. 41 54T sprocket 
5-foot No. 41 chain 
12 x 5-inch motor mount 
Chain guard 



12 feet of 1 x 2-inch 14-gauge steel tubing. Straight cuts at 
24, 26, 10 and 10 inches. Angled cuts: two pieces cut at 
25V8-inch (long face) and 23-inch (short face). Two pieces 
cut to 12 inches and angled at one end for seat support and 
steering posts. 






1-inch No. 41 clutch 



Engine (Erd used a 6-hp 
Tecumseh) 

Kill-switch kit 



6 feet of 1 x 1-inch 14-gauge steel tubing. Angled cuts: two 
pieces cut at 26-inch (long face), 24 1 /2-inch (short face). 

'/s-inch steel sheet. Use two 2 x 4-inch pieces to mount the 
seat and steering posts. Cut pieces of 16-gauge steel sheet 
for floorboards. 



5 feet of 2 x 3-inch 14-gauge steel tubing, square-cut to 
56 inches for central frame support. 



PARTS-SUPPLIER REVIEWS 







okartsupply.com 



bmikarts.com 




for parts and tips, this 
was the best. Great 
diagrams and advice. 
Louisiana expert Chet 
Dowden offers kart- 
building wisdom by 
phone or email. Motto: 
"In thrust we trust." 



cluttered parts lists, 
with scant description 

of parts' functions. Erd 

was satisfied shopping 
here. Owner Steve, 
unreachable by phone, 
did not reply to an 
emailed question. 



go-kart-source.com 



diagrams, racing tips 
and technical info. No 
parts are for sale, and 
no phone number is 
listed on the site. An 
emailed form request 
to "talk karts" was 
never answered. 



gokartparts.com 



but emailed questions 
get a prompt response 
from either Bill (the 
owner) or Bill (the tech 
support). A wide parts 
selection reflects the 
staff's kart-racing 
expertise. 




$ WorldMags 



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580 LB. CAPACITY 
FOUR DRAWER 

ROLLER CART 

LOT NO - 95659 





US-GENERAL 



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$QQ99 



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REG. PRICE 1 

MARBQR FREIGHT TOOLS -LIMIT 3 $££3.33 ■ 

itts uafoitfe aujifi ^ ;m2 iT^Miaa pu sfc^ HartiK hugnt Tews (HrtaHstofis, crtna. w MO ftintefi Cirnol te lmc wrti I 
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11: 



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90 AMP FLUX WIRE 

WELDER 

LOT NO. 98871 



SAVE 
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AUT£Y\ti?iYVX 



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$3999 



REG. 
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HAttHDR F-HflGHT 1001 & LIMIT 3 ^||V "^^ S149.99 

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CEN1RALPNEUMATIC 

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AIR FINISH NAILER 

LOT NO. 68Q23 



WE CARRY A 

FULL LINE OF 

FASTENERS 



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LOT NO, 

38082/460 05 




Item 38082 

$hqvm 



$Q99 

REG. PRICE 1 



1 

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HARIOR FREIGHT TOOLS - LIMIT S ***■ " ' 

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68053 



HAFtROB F-RH&Hl r 00 I 3- I IMI1 & 

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Unit »r :<*qnn icroiSbrietZDJ arc ensfm [K" iir." 



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LOT NO. 67854 




AUTO DARKENING 

WELDING HELMET 

WITH RACING STRIPE 

. DESIGN 

CHICAGO & MID1HG 



SOUR POWERED 



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43°/. 



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HAftBOR fRCIGMT TUOLS - LIMIT 4 

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or tTTTS^rraj Ofiqiii caupao nwt St pifscstoj o- 
sttce. arvrtti iiwi aifcrijrm o^ enw^d cni -e ir :roW 

05 IBy»I tfe CQlfiOl DtellTi '««t IffOaOJI &'IO't 1 

Urn: :rs Li-upan zcrn-jskir-sr Ji3 ore 01401 pf d^-. 



Ill 1 1 11 1 1 in 1 11 1111 mi 








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LOT NO. 68146 BRAKE 



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lntduitti coifion is posd ar^^H^s \xu ship Haitot' Pre^n Toafe tretu stores, oilii, or BOSnuTtari. CanmtlM used hMI 
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Urn? w>: K-up-in :«rGj5tirtr jii are Wjfoi pr o^, 1 



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if&'tfB'dsuwstFc-wjDn fotpir. rtfvBiticn ^rpj^sH aicr Wdf^S^n in^^pjv^r^rteirthlTOdl Otto 

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siwa, or wtft inr fffcr in, ty ensred tnftu li anfer 

ID r**te It* Cfciftfi ilHiut 'Alii lfiOj|fi -SHU 1. 



$149"j1^ $ 79 99 

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I liv-7ljjtec;ip:ni&';iwd3!^ «r HO Mint Cjiruifc#Ki!MTjh 

, arr'Dtt*ftHciUTan;L|im&ir^rrt^^ 

):r tiirelirrcd. O'oreJ cjojjhi n>jn to pieamed li- 
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SELF-VACUUMING AIR 

PALM SANDER 



CBNTOAL PNEUMATIC ' 



PRflPfciSllONAL 



llllll I Hill llll 1 1 II 




t mi OK flfcpjn per ti&iprr in\ ir* tftpftti pp*ri 



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RES. PRICE $49.99 



HAHflOH hHHGHI TOOI 5 I Mir 

This \ilwfa cxp"r. r, ;m3 jr^here^i shjp totar : !5tfri Trcrfs (^sterns. Drins ar ICO router} toiwii te jsu'tfh 
a** rtte dSKun ai ;:n>jr. fripm ret %ih m pin 1 jircftSE ate; -30 toys mm anjj«( suttee ct-fr wit ncirx Otte" 
5003 wtl! unpin fcst. Cdipoi camm tfttayrLttU. 

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CHICAGO 




800 RATED WAnS/ 
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PORTABLE 
GENERATOR 

LOT NO. 66619 

$89" 

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TOWABLE RIDE-ON 

TRENCHER 



■Electnc 1 



ieneratoral 

MAM BOH MttlGHT TOOLS I IMI1 

wy rttw 4rowI -x comen iktmr. rm v^d 91 pnsr puiQMsrs ancr 30 dvs ton nigmai pvtfuK rt^lc vtfh raxijl Otici 

or transf«r«d Uiflitf osipai mil t» puaittf m- ,- - . . , ,, , , ... ,, niiiim 

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Lire :rt rjLjof Jsiiitittw&tiiHcakiFOftpffi&v. ****«»-* ^ 1 ?.m 




LOT NQ. 
65162 



Dfeinn ;■; fjlaKteShOWf 

soW separately. 



mamqa nMii iools n'Mif 1 REG, PnlCE $79.99 

TKStfbalfecHfKmfcigarfttMftta arjfllnunta). Gjarrrt&sHiwtTi 

aif olrtr *«wn or rapiri wipan »ot nfcj w priji jiirtes »ft;' 10 d$s irmi anrjrai iirr^r ^ H p nMH Orb 
pod »**i Elites httftspn cariwt tebxtfrl.soW 
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REG. PRICE $3499.99 

$2599" 



HAHHIIH fHHCJHI iy(JLS IIMII H 

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Lnr 1 are caipai per customer arU one ccuiLfi t<i -liji ■' '"' * , """ 




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AUTOMATIC 
BATTERY FLOAT 

CHARGER 



SAVE 

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LOT NO. 42292 



$499 



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2 3 WAYS 



GENERAL IMPROVEMENTS 



Exterior Lighting © Sealed beams, 
mandated in 1940, replaced bulb-and-reflector 
designs that corroded and dimmed. Federal law 
required their use until the modern quartz- 
halogen lamp came along in 1978. Some 
vehicles now use HID lamps— and LEDS arejust 
around the corner. 



TireS © Remember inner tubes? Tubeless 
radial tires have universally replaced poor- 
handling, short-lived bias-plys. "They're so much 
more puncture-resistant that some new cars 
don't even come with spare tires. Bonus: better 
fuel economy due to reduced rolling resistance. 



Recyclability © Most of a modern 

car— including the plastic— is designed to be 
recycled. And thanks to a robust process, the 
modern automobile is the single most recycled 
object on planet Earth. 



Ergonomics © Dad had his choice of two 
colors for the cloth-covered bench seat. Now we 
ride around on power-adjustable, heated and 
cooled leather buckets, grasping leather 
steering wheels that have radio and telephone 
controls on the spokes. All the major controls 
are now within easy reach, and we even have 
automatically dimming rearview mirrors. 



Aerodynamics © Even/ car designer has 
to study aerodynamics to get a degree. Attention 
to airflow has reduced the drag coefficient of a 
Mustang from 0.46 in 1979 to 0.36 today. 




WorldMags 




Paint 

Henry Ford painted 
Model Ts with black 
lacquer and a 
paintbrush. Except for 
spray guns, the 
process didn't 
improve much until 
paint-booth emissions 

requirements made 
carmakers adopt 
durable clear-coat 
enamel in the '80s. 



Connectivity 

© Getting your mail in 
older cars meant 
driving down the lane 
to the mailbox. Now 
you can tweet from 
the dashboard, send 
maps to the nav 
system from your 
cellphone and let your 
car schedule its own 
service appointments. 



Security 

© It's ridiculously 
easy— without any 
tools— to hot-wire a 
classic car. Contrast 
that with the 
rolling-code transpon- 
der keys and 
immobolizers in 
modern cars. You can 
even follow a stolen 
car online, and shut it 
off for the police. 



Climate 
Control 

© Air conditioning is 
now standard on 
almost every new car. 
And many come with 
multizone controls 
that can be tailored 
for driver, passenger 
and even rear seats. 



Sound 
Systems 

AM radios ruled, 
and the upgrade was 
pushbutton tuning. 
Modern car stereos 

are more powerful 
and full-featured than 
the best home 
audiophile systems of 
20 years ago. 




138 JUNE 2011 | POPULARMECHANICS.COM 



> WorldMags 



LLUSTRATIONS BY DAVID SANTANA 



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No Purchase, Contribution, Donation or Payment Necessary- Tax-deductible to the fullest extent of the law. 2011 Continental Tire Dream Giveaway Sweepstakes starts March 1st, 2011, and ends 
October 15th, 2011 at 11:59 p.m. EST. Sweepstakes open to residents of the U-S. and Canada., {except Quebec) and other countries and U-S. territories and possessions only where offered and permitted by law, 
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Low-Friction Engines ©Attention to 

detail in the engine has reduced fuel consump- 
tion considerably. For example, this roller 
camshaft (left) replaces high-friction tappets 
with free-rolling, needle-bearing cam followers. 




PM DIY AUTO 




2 3 WAYS 



UNDER THE HOOD 



Fuel Economy 



© 



WEIGHT 






SAE HP 



2011 IMPALA 



3555 pounds 






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8.9 seconds 












MPG 



18/29 




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3935 pounds 



200 



9.4 seconds 









12.3 



Engine Diagnostics ©Your dads 

mechanic had to be a cross between a horse 
whisperer and a rocket scientist to keep a 
carbureted, ignition-points car running smooth 
Now the engine tunes itself, and you can 
monitor its operation with an iPhone app. 



Engine-Specific Output © in the old 

days, only temperamental race motors 
produced 100 hp for each liter of displacement, 
and they needed frequent rebuilds. Today, you 
can buy a $22,995 Honda Civic Si that delivers 
100 hp/liter and will run nearly forever. 



Transmissions © The gold standard used 
to be a three-speed automatic with a slushy 
torque converter. In the interest of fuel economy 
and quieter cruising, we now have seven-speed 
automatics, locking torque converters, 
continuously variable transmissions and 
quick-shifting automated dual-clutch gearboxes. 



Charging Systems ©weak, whining 

generators went bye-bye in the '60s: New cars 
have at least a 100-amp alternator; most are 
135 amps. 



QUALITY CONTROL 



Ride 

€ Solid axles are still 
used on trucks, but 

cushy independent 
suspension is now the 
norm. Some cars use 
electronically 
controlled shocks 
that change settings 
before the wheel 
sinks into a pothole. 



Reliability 

© Back in the day, the 
average car was lucky 
to wheeze along to 
100,000 miles. Now 
it's not unusual to see 
twice that on the 
odometer. And when 
was the last time 
you heard of a 
catastrophic engine 
failure? 



Maintenance 

© Imagine having 
your oil changed 
every thousand miles, 
and pumping grease 
into a dozen 
suspension fittings. 
Most cars now have 
sealed suspension 
joints, and oil-change 
intervals are as long 
as 12,000 miles. 



Emissions 

© Drive behind a '60s 
vintage car and the 
acrid exhaust fumes 
will burn your eyes. 
Today's cars emit less 
than 1 percent of the 
smog-producing 
chemicals that cars 
put out four decades 
ago, and very little 
carbon monoxide. 



Handling 

© Modern cars have 



■ 



precise power- 
assisted rack-and- 
pinion steering gear, 
grippier tires and far 
better suspension 
kinematics. Now you 
control where the car 
goes, not the other 
way around. 




140 JUNE 2011 | POPULARMECHANICS.COM 



> WorldMags 



WorldMags 



Each Of These Kids Needs Somebody 



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Smile Train is a 501 (cK3) nonprofit recognized by the IRS, and all donations to Smile Train are tax-deductible in accordance with IRS regulations. © 201 1 Smite Train. 




WorldMags 



Stuck on You 



wanted to machine the rear brake discs on my new-to-me used 
car when I replaced the brake pads. But no amount of tugging or 
banging would budge them from the hubs. 




Moisture will eventually work its way into the interstices between the disc (or 
drum) and the hub face or studs, causing rust. Rust is physically larger than the 
iron that it replaces, and the resulting buildup of pressure can freeze tightly fitted 
parts together. To make your life simpler, many late-model brakes, discs and drums 
have small tapped holes in the face of the casting. Just thread a bolt into the hole, 
and turn. The bolt will bottom out on the hub, pushing the disc/drum free. 

A few discs will have a small Phillips-head machine screw that holds the disc tight 



alternately on the flat part of the disc 
between the studs and on the perime- 
ter of the disc (not on the friction sur- 
face of the disc, which might actually 
bend) with a lead or dead-blow ham- 
mer. Some penetrating oil wouldn't 
hurt, either. When that doesn't work, 



to the hub face to keep it from fa I ling off during wheel changes. (You should have this which it usually doesn't, add some heat. 



problem, right?) After the screw is removed, the disc should pop off easily, unless cor- 
rosion (see above) has welded them together. Stay tuned. 

Some discs, notably on older cars, are just obstinate. My usual routine is to bang 



A propane torch is good; an acetylene 
torch with a rosebud tip is better- 
remember that brakes are designed to 




142 JUNE 2011 | 

? WorldMags 



P0PULARMECHANICS.COM 



PHOTOGRAPHS BY MARC ASNIN 



WorldMags 



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PM DIY AUTO 
CAR CLINIC Q+A 



dissipate heat, and will soak up a lot of 
it before they really get hot. Apply heat, 
again, right in between the studs. Bang 
with your hammer while the iron is hot. 
No go? Chill with cold water, lather, 
rinse; repeat. In theory, the alternating 
heat and cold will crumble the rust 
that's bonding the whole shootin' 
match together. 

Last resort: Borrow or rent a big 
gear puller, but plan on replacing the 
disc— it'll bend up like a Pringle before it 



springs free. 

Now that you have it apart: When 

t 



you go to reinstall it, start by wire- 
brushing or Scotch-Briting all the corro- 
sion off the mating surfaces of the hub 
and disc. If there's a line of rust lurking 
in the inside corner of the disc's mating 
flange, use something pointy to get 
every last vestige out. Then lightly coat 
one of the surfaces with some anti- 
seize compound. Next time you're in 
there, you should be able to pull it apart 
by hand. 



Switch to Decaf 

My 1999 Chevy S-10 makes a weird 
noise; it sounds like it is coming from 
right under the dash, sort of like a 
percolator perking coffee. My uncle 
says that it is the odometer cable 
rubbing the lining. If it were the 
odometer cable, wouldn't the noise 
be present all the time? And not when 
the vehicle is stopped at a red light? 

This is probably caused by air bubbles in 
the cooling system gurgling as they 
flow through the heater core. Modern 
cooling systems are notoriously hard to 
bleed of excess air. Start by making 
sure the overflow reservoir is filled to 
the cold, or hot (depending on how 
warm the engine is), line, and that the 
radiator cap and hose to the reservoir 
are not leaking air. Check the hose and 
the cap's rubber seals and the radiator's 
mating surface. The radiator should be 
brimful of coolant, not just full enough 
to cover the tubes. If air isn't entering 
the system, eventually the bubbles 
should work their way to the overflow 
reservoir and vent to the atmosphere, 
at least in theory. 

Warning: Some vehicles require an 



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I was moving 

furniture 
around my house 
last month, and 
realized how simple 
a furniture dolly 
makes shuttling 
large, heavy stuff 
around the living 
room. That's the 
same principle as 
the Park-n-Move 
motorcycle dolly. 
It has made parking 
my motorcycles 
simple— no more 
eight-point K-turns 
to maneuver the big 
touring bike around. 
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elaborate bleeding process to eliminate 
enough air to get coolant flowing at all. 
Skimping on the bleeding may cost you 
an overheated engine. 

Over the Hi 

I own a 2000 Ford Excursion diesel 
4x4. After I reprogrammed the 
computer to increase the boost 
pressure (it netted about 60 hp), the 
fuel economy rose to 18 to 20 mpg 
when the truck is empty and 12 to 
14 when towing 10,000 pounds. 
That's at a steady 60 mph with the 
engine revving at 1700 rpm. If I 
increase my speed to 65 mph, the 
engine rpm climbs to 2150 and the 
fuel economy drops to 14 to 16 
empty and 8 to 10 loaded. I am going 
to rebuild the front drivetrain 
anyway, so I'm thinking of either 
installing a taller final-drive ratio in 
both axles or somehow adding an 
auxiliary overdrive unit. Which 
affects the computer more? 

The computer and engine won't care at 
cruising where the taller gearing comes 
from— either from upping the final-drive 
ratio in the axles or from adding a third- 
party overdrive. But that's at cruising 
speed. Upping the axle final-drive ratio 
may make it difficult to get the whole 
freight train moving or to climb hills 
when you're towing heavy loads, 
because the ratio change will also affect 
the engine rpm when the transmission 
is in the lower gears. The overdrive unit, 
on the other hand, can be shut off for 
low-speed operations and simply 
reserved for flat or downhill steady- 
state highways. But auxiliary overdrive 
units run between three and five 
grand— plus installation, if you're not 
doing it yourself— and you can buy a fair 
amount of diesel for that much. If you 
already need to replace one axle, or at 
least the ring and pinion gear, simply 
doing the other ring and pinion set at 
the same time isn't going to be that 
much money. If you live where it's 
mostly flat, the taller gears might not 
make the truck too sluggish off the line. 
You need to make some decisions. 
Figure out how many miles you tow 
annually. Calculate your fuel costs, and 
then work out how long it will take to 
recoup your investment. If your truck is 
already 10 years old, it may not be 




$ WorldMags 




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PM DIY AUTO III 
CAR CLINIC Q+A 



yesterday, maybe so. 

Topped Off 

I like to check my fuel economy every 
tankful. Should I let the pump shut 
itself off, or should I fill the tank right 
up to the top of the filler neck? 

In theory it doesn't matter, as long as 
you always do it the same way. For the 



tank as high as you can. As the fuel, which is stored in a cool underground tank, 
warms to atmospheric conditions, it expands, potentially flowing into the evapora- 
tive-emission-system charcoal canister, a part that's designed to handle fuel vapor, 
not liquid. 



worth your while. On the other hand, 

with what I paid for a tankful of diesel Swap Meet 



Can a Chevy Astro van with a 4.3-liter V6 be modified to accept a diesel motor? 
Would it be too much trouble? 

Short answers: Yes. And probably. Long answer: With enough time, determination 
and money, you can do anything. But why would you want to? 

Your Astro is at least 16 years old (they stopped production in 1995). Odds are it 
has substantial mileage on it, so the rest of the van is not exactly showroom-new. 
Assumingyou can find some diesel motor that fits into the Astro's diminutive engine 
bay and bolt it up to some acceptable transmission, you'll need to fabricate engine 
mounts, transmission mounts and probably a driveshaft. The diesel will need a differ- 



most accurate fill-ups: Top off first ent fuel-pump arrangement, so you'll be removing and modifying the tank and updat- 



thing in the morning when the gas in 



ing the rest of the fuel system. You'll need to remove the evaporative emission con- 



your car is at atmospheric tempera- trol system (EVAP), which is of questionable legality in many states. (You don't live in 



ture, not heated up from passing 
through the fuel pump and recirculat- 
ing in the engine compartment. Find a 
station and pump with a slight slope 
that puts the filler neck a bit higher. 
Top off only once after the automatic 
shutoff. I generally let the pump click 
off on its own, wait 10 seconds for all 
the foam to clear, then add more fuel- 
slowly— until the pump clicks off again. 



California, do you? If you do, turn the page now.) 

I suppose if you have a suitable diesel around, and a well-equipped shop, and a 
lot of time on your hands, it could be done. But with diesel fuel selling for 48 cents a 
gallon more than regular last week, what's the point? 

Don't Be Wasted 

I drive a Lexus ES 350, which has a 10.5:1 compression ratio. I have been running 
on 91-octane fuel. Now that all fuel is mixed with 10 percent ethanol, which has a 
higher octane than gas, am I wasting my money on the high-test fuel? 

While adding alcohol to gasoline will raise its octane measure (ethanol has an octane 
n general, it's a bad idea to top off the rating of 108), the octane rating on the pump already includes the contribution of the 




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ethanol in the mix. So, technically, your 
high-performance, high-compression 
engine will run best on the grade of gas- 
oline specified by the manufacturer. Like 
most modern OBD-II engines, it will also 
run fine on lower-octane fuel (albeit with 
poorer fuel economy and lowered per- 
formance) by seamlessly retarding the 
timing and richening the mixture to 
eliminate spark knock. And at the pre- 
mium they get for high-test these days, 
why pay for it if you don't have to? 

Obstructed Vision 

When there is a light rain or fog, my 
windshield gets really splotchy, like 
it's dirty— yet it's clean. This makes it 
hard to see sometimes. But as soon 
as the rain picks up, the issue seems 
to disappear. I suspect the previous 
owner tried putting Rain-X on the 
windshield and did a shoddy job. Any 
way to correct this? 
Just clean the windshield with some 
Bon Ami, or even some fine autobody 
rubbing compound, to get whatever 
contaminant is left— probably wax, 
because Rain-X doesn't do that— off. 
Then apply some Rain-X according to 
the directions on the bottle. 



Lights Out 



I forgot to put my gas cap on after 
filling up, and traveled 200 miles 
before I realized it. Yet to my surprise, 
the Check Engine light didn't illumi- 
nate. I had my car serviced and told 
them what happened and was told 
that the light would not come on if the 
cap was left off when the engine was 
warm. So, for the next few days, I 
removed the cap before starting my 
cold engine. I tried this several times, 
and the Check Engine light never came 
on. What gives? 

The evaporative emission control sys- 
tem (EVAP) on your car is designed to 
keep gasoline fumes bottled up inside 
the tank and inside a canister full of acti- 
vated charcoal. The fuel vapors are 
slowly vented back into the engine 
when it's warmed up and running. This 
will have no effect on fuel consumption 
because the engine computer compen- 
sates while this is done and keeps the 
air-to-fuel ratio correct. 

The EVAP does a periodic self-check 
to see if it's performing properly, and 




$ WorldMags 



one of the things it does is check the 
pressure in the fuel tank, which is nor- 
mally a pound or three above atmo- 
spheric, due to the gasoline's vapor 
pressure. 

Leaving the gas cap off is a favorite 
way to make the system fail this test. 
Or just not screwing on the cap tight 
enough, as many car owners have found 
after an expensive visit to the dealer to 
have their gas caps tightened. 

You've neglected to mention to me 
what make, year and model of car you 
have, so I have to speak generically. Dif- 



ferent cars perform this self-test at 
different intervals and according to dif- 
ferent criteria. Your car simply didn't 
happen to come around to a periodic 
self-test while the cap was off. pn 



©Got a car problem? Ask 
Mike about it. Send your ques- 
tions to pmautoclinic@)hearst.com or 
to Car Clinic, Popular Mechanics, 300 
W. 57th St, New York, NY 10019- 
5899. While we cannot answer 
questions individually, problems of 
general interest will be discussed in 
the column. 




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Extending Your HDMI Cables 

IN THE HI-DEF ERA, ALL AUDIOVISUAL SIGNALS TRAVEL OVER ONE CABLE. BUT THINGS GET TRICKY WHEN 
THAT CABLE HAS TO COVER A LONG DISTANCE. BY JOHN HERRMAN 

© Let's give the HDMI cable some credit. It helped clean up the tangled mess 
of wires behind our TVs, gave us a way to quickly link a stunning range of devices 
with a new generation of displays and provided a sturdy backbone for the HD 
revolution. But for everything this unassuming all-in-one cable can handle, some- 
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> WorldMags 



POPULARMECHANICS.COM | JUNE 2011 149 



WorldMags 



Like many video, audio and data 
cables, HDMI cords can suffer from sig- 
nal degradation at longer lengths— 50 
feet is generally considered the maxi- 
mum reliable length. And it's rare to see 
an HDMI cable longer than 25 feet in a 
store. Even online, cables more than 50 I 
feet long can be hard to find. If your TV, 
set-top box and other AV equipment are Cat 6 Piggyback 




INSIDE THE WALL 

HDMI qualifies as low-voltage wiring, so wall plates can 
be attached with a simple bracket rather than a standard 
electrical box. Since you can't terminate HDMI wires 
yourself, look for wall plates with an internal female 
connector. 




all on the same piece of furniture, this 
isn't much of a concern. With a collo- 
cated setup, you'll probably never need 
more than 6 feet of cable at a time. 

But HDTVs have introduced a whole 
new way of arranging ho me theater gear. 
Flat screens are increasingly thin and 
lightweight, and their picture-frame pro- 
files make them perfect for hanging on 
walls. Similarly, HD home theater digital 
projectors are now affordable enough for 
nongazillionaires to set up a basement 
cinema. A clean installation of either of 
these setups generally requires a bit of 
in-wall wiring, sometimes even from one 
room— an AV closet, for instance— to 



One commonly used solution to cable-length limitations is something called HDMI 
over Cat 6. Steven D'Addone, co-owner of Intra Home Systems in New Jersey, an 
installer of high-end audiovisual systems, swears by the technology. "We only run 
Cat 6," he says. 

Here's how it works: A video source, such as an HD cable box, is connected to a 
small device— a "balun," in the parlance of the trade— with a short HDMI cable. The 
balun usually takes the form of a small, router-like box or a wall plate. Its job is to pass 
the HDMI signal along to one or more Cat 5e or Cat 6 cables. (These are the same 
cables used to wire Ethernet networks— Cat 5e is a more common cable, but the 
newer Cat 6 standard is preferred by AV installers for its higher bandwidth.) At 
the receiving end, a similar box passes the signal back onto an HDMI cable, which then 
connects to your display. 

Now, all HDMI over Cat 6 baluns are not created equal. Some crudely bridge the 
HDMI and Cat 6 cables by relying on the signal power of the original video source— this 
limits the range considerably. Others compress and then decompress the HDMI signal, 
but this can cause hardware compatibility problems. D'Addone recommends a third 
another. And when you're fishing wires type of system. "What seems to be the most reliable are products that are high- 
up into ceilings, over doors and under bandwidth and powered on both sides," he says. These boxes, which can be found for 
floors, the necessary spool of cable gets about $100 each, create a direct bridge between HDMI and a pair of Cat 6 cables, but 
long quickly. Here are the alternatives. provide extra power to ensure the signal can travel distances up to 150 feet. 






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Best of all, powered HDMI over Cat 6 
preserves the quality of video and audio 
signals. And given the low cable price- 
about a dollar per 10 feet online— HDMI 
over Cat 6 makes the most economic 
sense for longer throws. 

Copper and Fiber 

© For distances up to 300 feet, sim 

larly priced adapters are available that 
make use of coaxial cable. One catch: 
HDMI over coaxial solutions usually 
require a minimum of two coax cables, 
and often as many as four. This means 
that existing household coax installa- 
tions, which generally make use of only 
a single cable running to each connect- 
ed room, won't be of much use. 

For even longer runs, you'll have to 
leave the world of copper for fiberop- 
tics. While the fiber itself is cheap, 
adapter hardware is pricey ($500-plus 
per box). In addition, DIY installation is a 
complicated and difficult proposition, 
and professional installation makes the 
setup even more expensive. 

Cable-Free 

© What if you'd like to lug your TV 
into the backyard for the big game? Or 
maybe you rent your home and aren't 
permitted to string cable through your 
walls. In these cases, you can bypass 
wires entirely. 

"Wireless HDMI" is a phrase thrown 
around a lot, but it doesn't refer to an 
official standard or even a specific tech- 
nology. Rather, it's a blanket term for a 
variety of wireless products that trans- 
mit video signals using proprietary wire- 
less standards. These work by stationing 
a transmitter near the video source and 
a small receiver by the TV. 

Wireless HD systems can be useful, 
but they have limitations. In most prod- 
ucts, broadcast ranges top out at around 
50 feet. Unlike HDMI over Cat 6, wireless 
HDMI solutions tend to degrade image 
quality— not fatally, but enough for a dis- 
cerning eye to notice. Signals are also 
prone to unpredictable interruptions, just 
like you sometimes experience with 
Wi-Fi. Lastly, these devices aren't cheap: 
To get reasonable reliability, range and 
image quality, you'll probably want to go 
with a major brand— Philips or Sony, or 
for a higher-end setup and longer ranges, 
Gefen— and spend at least $300. 




$ WorldMags 



Good Old HDMI 

© Before dropping hundreds of dol- 
lars on HDMI extenders or wireless 
transmitters, make sure it's really nec- 
essary. For runs 50 feet and under, an 
HDMI cable is still your simplest option. 
And don't go for the high-priced cables 
found in retail stores. For the $50 you 
might spend on 10 feet of cable at Best 
Buy, you can nab a 50-footer from a 
reputable online seller such as Newegg 
or Monoprice. HDMI can be fished and 
installed in-wall almost as easily as 
coaxial or Cat 6 cable. (Although, thanks 



PM DIY TECH 




HDMI 



to HDMI's security features, you cannot 
cut the cable to an exact length and 
apply fittings yourself, which means you 
generally have to overbuy and leave a 
bit of slack in your walls.) So be sure to 
measure out the distance between your 
equipment and TV before you invest in 
a complex system. It may turn out that 
an HDMI cable is the cheapest and easi- 
est solution after all. pm 



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iSpy a 
Missing Phone 

I'm the kind of guy who seems to 

always lose his phones. 

Any tips on getting them back? 



BACK!"), sound a phone's alarm, lock 
the device if you didn't set it with a 
password, or even remotely wipe it if 
it's full of sensitive information. These 
controls are typically handled from 
either a Web interface or, in some 
cases, through a friend's phone that has 
the same app installed. 

Just about every smartphone plat- 
form has its share of free and pay phone- 
recovery apps. In my experience, most 
of these programs handle their core 
functionality (that would be showing a 
phone's location on a map) beautifully. In 
case the missing gadget is in motion 
(say, left behind in a cab), some apps 
even allow you to watch it move across 
a map in real time. That creates interest- 
ing stakeout and sting potentials for 
stolen phones (though you're probably 
better offjust calling the cops). 

If you've got an iPhone, the best 
solution is Apple's own free Find My 
iPhone app. (There are also versions of 
the app available for tracking down a 
missing iPad or iPod Touch.) A good 
pick for Android, BlackBerry, Symbian 
and Windows Phone users is McAfee 




WaveSecure ($19.90 per year). I'm also 
a fan of the free Android app Prey, which 
can quietly send you a continuously 
updated feed of snapped photos and 
GPS locations without letting a thief 
know what it is up to. 

Predictably, these apps aren't bullet- 
proof. If a thief disables a phone's GPS, 
As you might guess, these apps typically work by using the phone's GPS chip as a some apps are capable of remotely 
homing beacon, allowing you to see the device's location on an online map. Some of switching it back on, but others are not. 



Not so long ago, losing a phone to the clutches of a cab, couch or thief pretty 
much meant game over— your chances of getting the missing device back 
were somewhere between nil and zilch. Well, today's phones aren't called smart for 
nothing, and there are now plenty of apps that give us at least a fighting chance of 
tracking down a wayward phone. 



them also contain other security-minded features, such as the ability to send mes- 
sages to anybody who might have stolen or stumbled upon your phone ("GIVE IT 



And if you're using a GSM phone (basi- 
cally, one that requires a SIM card) and 




152 JUNE 2011 | 

> WorldMags 



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PM DIY TECH 




DIGITAL CLINIC Q+A 



the thief is smart enough to remove your SIM, it could foil your manhunt. 

Of course, not everybody has an app-capable smartphone. If you've got an older 
phone, I suggest, at the very least, setting its lock screen to display your name and 
contact info and the promise of a reward for anybody who happens to stumble 
upon your phone. You'd be surprised how much of a motivator the promise of good 
karma and cash can be. 

3D Sweet Spot 

I'm assuming the glasses-free 3D display on the Nintendo 3DS game system has 
a sweet spot. How big is it, and what happens when I move outside it? 

You're right. The glasses-free (or autostereoscopic, if you want to be fancy about it) 
display on the new Nintendo 3DS is a minor technological miracle, but its sweet spot 
is more of a viewfinder than an IMAX screen. I've been testing out the portable device, 
and have found that tilting your head or hand even a fraction of an inch is enough to 
make the screen go dark or turn into a blur. This doesn't necessarily make you dizzy 
or nauseated (even though Nintendo does advise users to rest their eyes with a 
whopping 10-minute break for every 30 minutes they spend staring at the screen)— it 
just kind of takes you out of the game, and could prove problematic for tasks that 
depend on precise hand-eye coordination. 

One annoying result: The device could require hyperkinetic players, who may be 
used to dramatically dipping and diving their hands during excited gaming, to train 
themselves to cool their horses. I have also found that the 3D makes it very difficult 
for friends to comfortably watch a game over your shoulder. 





Naming Our 
Tech World: 



messMS" 



The scenario: You 

are at a concert, a 
convention, a 
football game, any 

place the sheer 
number of people 
strains the local 

cell towers beyond 
their limits, and 
text messages just 
can't get through. 
TTien, the minute 
your service 
returns to normal, 
a dozen or more 
texts flood in. 



So, what do we 
call this phenom- 
enon? No term 
currently exists, so 
I asked some of 
the best tech 
minds around for 

suggestions. Some 
of the better ideas 
included 'sup- 
pressed MS/' 
"textplosion" and 
"TTie SMS Bounty." 
Still, the best 
overall entry (as 
judged by the PM 



technology editors) 
was "messMS," 
which came from 
Huffington Post 
technology editor 
Bianca Bosker. 

If you've come 
across a nameless 
tech phenomenon 
thatyou'dliketo 
see us coin a 
phrase for, get in 
touch (contact info 

in the box at right), 
and we just might 

take it on. 




Popular Mechanics (ISSN 0032-4558) 
is published monthly, 12 times a year, by Hearst 
Communications, Inc., 300 West 57th Street, New 
York, NY 10019, U.SA Frank A. Bennack, Jr., Vice 
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President, Finance and Administration. Hearst 
Magazines Division: David Carey, President; John P 
Loughlin, Executive Vice President and General 
Manager; John A. Rohan, Jr., Vice President and 
Group Controller. © 2011 by Hearst 
Communications, Inc. All rights reserved. Popular 
Mechanics is a registered trademark of Hearst 
Communications, Inc. Periodicals postage paid at 
N.Y, N.Y, and additional entry post offices. Canada 
Post International Publications mail product 
(Canadian distribution) sales agreement no. 
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Printed in U.SA 



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AS A SERVICE TO READERS, 
Popular Mechanics publishes 
newsworthy products, techniques 
and scientific and technological 
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variance in the quality and condition 
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Popular Mechanics cannot assume 
responsibility for proper application 
of techniques or proper and safe 
functioning of manufactured 
products or reader-built projects 
resulting from information published 
in this magazine. 



Fortunately, failing all else, the 
system has a dial that lets players 
turn down the 3D effect— or shut it 
off altogether. But, seriously, if 
you're going to do that, doesn't it 
kind of defeat the whole purpose of 
this thing? 

iPad Flash 

Is there any way to watch Flash 
videos on my iPad? 

Yep, but it ain't pretty. Apple has 
drawn heaps of criticism for its deci- 
sion to build the iPad as an Adobe 
Flash-resistant device, a deficiency 
that has carried over into the just- 
released iPad 2. The company's rea- 
soning: The format can cause insta- 
bility and serve as a security loophole 
for ne'er-do-wells. But while Apple's 
leviathan-like influence has caused a 
good portion of the Web to rebuild 
Flash sites into iPad-friendly formats 
such as HTML5, the iPad's Safari 
browser still stumbles upon a frus- 
tratingly large number of incompati- 
ble pages. 

So the solution for the Flash- 
craving iPad user is, don't use Safari. 
A $5 third-party browser called Sky- 
fire allows users to watch Flash vid- 
eos right on their iPads. It works by 
transcoding the Flash content into 
HTML5 in the cloud and then push- 
ing it out to the iPad. 

This does present some potential 
problems. Because the browser is 
dependent on Skyfire's servers to 
convert the file, it can be a bit slow— 
or even completely inoperable— if an 
avalanche of users tries to pile on at 
once. (This happened when the com- 
pany launched a similar Flash-read- 
ing Web browser for the iPhone in 
late 2010.) So, by all means take 
Skyfire for a spin, but don't be sur- 
prised if it isn't as smooth an experi- 
ence as you're used to. 



PM 



Got a technology problem? 

Ask Seth about it. 
Send your questions to 
pmdigitalclinici&hearstcom or 
over Twitter at twitter.com/ 
sethporges. While we cannot 
answer questions individually, 
problems of general interest will 
be discussed in the column. 





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This 
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When a script calls for an electrifying chase scene, filmmakers dial Lance Mayer. As 
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"\ make sure everything is working so the director gets the shot he wants." — sarah shatz 




^ « 














Name: LANCE MAYER 



Location: NEW YORK, N 



Age: 37 



Years on Job: 6 



1. CONTERRA RADIO 
CHEST HARNESS 

Originally designed for rescue 

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roll the camera remotely. The 
Libra head can be programmed 
to record and repeat precise 
movements; its resistance 
to water and dust allow it to 
withstand extreme environ- 
ments. And it's versatile: When 
a filmmaker needs to get tight 
shots through windows or 
doorways, Mayer converts the 
Libra into a 27-pound mini ver- 



He also uses the mini if the 
camera platform has weight 
restrictions— as would be the 
case with a Nascar vehicle 
traveling at 180 mph. 

3. SCORPIO CRANE 

In order to set up a sweeping 
shot or hard-to-capture angle 
for a cinematographer, Mayer 
attaches a Libra head and a 
camera to a telescoping crane, 
such as this Scorpio. The 
modular crane can extend 
from 5 to 23 feet. 



^0^ 160 JUNE 2011 

Jjfi WorldMag 



POPULARMECHANICS.COM 



S 



PHOTOGRAPH BY DENNIS KLEIMAN 



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